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Full text of "The Creative Woman"

rheCreatftJe^oman 




WOMEN AS HEALERS 



FALL 1986 




Vol. 8, No. 1 Fall 1986 



C realise 
\0onum Governors State University, University Park, IL 60466-3193 



ISSN 0736-4733 



Tl'BLISHED UNDER THE AUSPICES OF THE PROVOST'S OFFICE, £M986 GOVERNORS STATE UNIVERSITY AND HELEN HUGHES 



STAFF 

Helen E. Hughes, Editor 

John Orenburg, Editorial Consultant 

Suzanne Oliver, Art Director 

Janet Green Editorial Assistant 

Leda Lance, Typesetter 



ADVISORY COUNCIL 

Margarer Brady, Social Sciences, 1733 Maple Rd., #44 Homewood, IL 60430 

Rev. Ellen Dohner Livingston, Religion, 7444 Via Paraiso, Cucamonga, CA 91730 

Rita Durrant, League of American Penuomen, Aquetong Rd., Dovlestown, PA 18901 

Carol Houlihan Flvnn, Literature, Tufts University, Medford MA. 02155 

Harriet Gross, Sociology /Woman's Studies, Governors State University, University Park, IL 60466 

Helene Guttman, Biological Sciences, 5306 Bradley Blvd., Bethesda, MD 20014 

Young Kim, Communications Science, Governors State University, University Park, IL 60466 

Temmie Gilbert, Theatre/Media, Governors State University, University Park, IL 60466 

Linda Grace-Kobas, Journalism, University of Buffalo, Buffalo, N.Y. 14260 

Betye Saar, Fine Arts, 8074 Willow Glen, Hollywood, CA. 90046 

Sara Shumer, Political Theory, Haverford College, Haverford, PA 19041 

Emily Wasiolek, Literature, Prairie State College, Chicago Heights, IL 60411 

Barbara Jenkins, Psychology, Governors State University, University Park, IL 60466 

Bethe Hagens, Anthropology, Governors State University, University Park, IL 60466 

Tern Schwartz, Psychology, Governors State University, University Park, IL 60466 

Joan Lewis, Poetry, 2350 Carriage Dr., Powell, OH 43065 

Lynn Thomas Strauss, Women's Studies: Parenting, 220 S. Harvey, Oak Park, IL 60303 

Debbie Garretson, Counseling, 51 Cedar, Park Forest, IL 60466 

Glenda Bailey Mershon, 305 Shawnee, Park Forest, IL 60466 



TABLE OF CONTENTS 



3 Introduction 

4 Voices: American Women in Medicine 

12 Book Review Sympathy and Science by Regina Markell Morantz - Sanchez - Sheri Bortz 

14 Body Imagery and Gestalt Work In the Reduction of Stress, Anxiety, Pain and Conflicts 

1 5 Poetry 



Carol Hunter 



17 Special Section: Healing Arts and Rituals - Introduction 

18 Journeys Into Color - Lillian M. Rhinehart and Paula Englehom 
2 1 The Inner Winner's Circle - Janet Bray 

23 The Magic of Janet Bray's Tibetan Bells - Betty B. Bowman 

24 Dance Therapy As A Healing Art - Janet Beers Stanton 
27 Who Is Dance Therapist - Frieda F. Sherman 

29 Shamanism: A Spiritual Discipline For Personal and Community Enpowerment 

3 1 Crystal Earth Healing - Rowena Pattee 

33 Healer With Sound, Breath and Quartz Crystals - Uma Sita Silbey 

35 The Healing Touch of Magical Women - Gail Montgomery 

37 Exploring Other Lives: Healing The Ones We Live Now - Cerridwen Fallingstar 

39 Bibliography - Suzanne Palmer 






Lyn Taylor 



40 Perinatal Death, Bereavement and the Healing Process - Janet Green 
43 Letters to the Editor 
45 Editor's Column 



The Creative Woman is published three times ;i year hy Gover- 
nors State University. We focus on a special topic in each issue, 
presented from a feminist perspective. We celebrate the creative- 
achievements of women in many fields and appeal to inquiring 
minds. We publish fiction, poetry, hook reviews, articles, 
photography and original graphics. 



Cover: Betye Saar, etching, 1964 





INTRODUCTION 





In the last ten years feminists, both inside and 
outside the medical profession, have mounted an 
increasingly sharp criticism of "establishment" 
health care delivery. The growth of women's 
clinics, teaching self-care, educating women to 
take responsibility for their own bodies, 
epitomized in the best-seller Our Bodies, Ourselves 
(1976), was part of that thrust. TCW has been 
active in this process: Gena Corea's book, The 
Hidden Malpractice: How American Medicine 
Treats Women as Patients and Professionals (1977) 
and Mary Roth Walsh's Doctors Wanted: No 
Women Need Apply (1977) were reviewed in our 
Spring 1978 issue (V. 1, No. 4); and in Fall 1982 
(V. 6, No. 1) we put out an issue on "Our 
Bodies: Taking Charge", focusing on Wellness, 
Exercise and Sport, with an extensive 
bibliography on women's health issues. 

In our most recent issue on Women in China, 
we saw how Chinese physicians are integrating 
western medicine and traditional Chinese 
medicine. 

Now with this issue devoted to Woman as 
Healer, we take the topic further and, we think, 
deeper. In our lead article, "Voices", five physi- 
cians, establishment-trained, tell us eloquently 
what is wrong; tearing away the veil of the 
"medical mystique", they share with us their pas- 
sion for their work as healers and their rage at 
those obstacles that impede or prevent sound 
practice in this period of bureaucratized and 
commercialized medicine. 

Suzanne Palmer, guest editor, provides a special 
section on alternatives: modes of healing involv- 
ing various art therapies, rituals, and 
shamanistic practices borrowed from other 
cultures, in stark contrast to modern medicine as 
we know it. Yet, when she writes, "Healing 
devoid of concern for the whole person may be 
cheaper in the short run; in terms of a whole 
life, we are just beginning to see the high costs..'.' 
she expresses a thought that is entirely com- 
patible with those spoken by our doctors in 
"Voices." And when she writes about these 
other approaches to healing, "You don't have to 
be a believer, only keep an open mind to the 
possibility. . ." she states an attitude entirely 
consistent with scientific skepticism. 

What might health care look like in the future? 
Can we imagine some integration of scientific 
medicine and the healing arts as described here? 
Should we think of them not as "alternatives" 
but as "complements"? What special role do 
women play in healing? 

Janet Green describes her recovery following the 



loss of an infant, Carol Hunter explains her 
method of using gestalt imagery in healing, and 
Sheri Bortz reviews a book on the history of 
women in medicine in America. 

We hope that this issue will provoke some let- 
ters: agree or disagree, but let us hear from you. 

HEH 




Hygeia, daughter of Aesculapius and goddess of 
health 



J^u 




VOICES: 

AMERICAN WOMEN IN 
MEDICINE 

In April 1986 Barbara Jenkins, professor of 
psychology at Governors State University, con- 
vened a symposium on the subject "Women in 
Medicine and Their Sense of Self," part of a 
three-day conference on Women's Changing 
Roles and Changes in Self- Concepts. The physi- 
cians who participated were Meryl Abensohn, 
M.D., dermatologist, Anchor Organization for 
Health Maintenance; Jaya Adiga, M.D., staff 
physician, Oak Forest Hospital; Ann Marie 
Dunlap, M.D., internist, private practice; Sheri 
Bortz, M.D., general practitioner, medical direc- 
tor of Our Health Center, a community clinic in 
Palo Alto. The proceedings were recorded on 
three and a half hours of audio and video tapes 
which are on file in the Governors State Univer- 
sity Library. What is presented here are a few of 
the highlights that appealed to the Editor. The 
doctors discussed first their personal reasons for 
entering medicine, the task of balancing personal 
and professional life, and then entered into a 
penetrating criticism of medical education and 
the delivery of health care in this country in the 
80's. 

Barbara Jenkins: Do you want to share some of 
what your experiences were in choosing medicine and 
going to medical school and what you experienced 
because of being a woman? 



"In my case there wasn't too much difficulty. I 
come from a family of doctors. My uncles and 
most of my cousins were doctors. My father was 
a professor of surgery in India. He was a surgeon 
and I am one of two siblings, and it was always 
assumed I was going to be a doctor. I never 
realized how difficult it was going to be, but it 
was assumed I was going to be one, and that's 
the way it was. I chose medicine because I 
thought at that time it was the profession to be. 
You know. Noble and all that." 

"I had a rather different experience. I do come 
from a family where women enter the profes- 
sions, but I always thought I would be a 
biologist and I was set to have a career as a 
research biologist and become a professor at 
some university. As I progressed through college 
there was a lot of pressure from both my family 
and professors for me to go into medicine, and I 
really was convinced in my own head that I did 
not want to be a doctor. I was a very shy person 
and I also wasn't very assertive, and when I 
looked at how I saw physicians in the world, 
and looked at myself, I felt there was absolutely 
no way that I could fit into that role. For 
reasons that I almost can't understand, I was all 
set to apply to graduate school and this pro- 
fessor at the University of Illinois in Urbana 
said, 'Oh, you know, you're making the biggest 
mistake of your life. Absolutely, you will regret 
going to graduate school.' You know, all the 
way through medical school I had a lot of issues 
dealing with why I was there — if I was there to 
please myself or to please other people." 

"My experiences are unusual, but also similar to 
Sheri's. I was going to be an archeologist, and I 
decided that it made no sense to be an ar- 
cheologist after six years of Latin because I 
couldn't take being out in the sun on a dig. If 
you couldn't do that, there is no sense coming 
into the field. In college I got very interested in 
the sciences. I was thinking also of going to 
graduate school, probably in genetics, but I 
wasn't sure that I wanted to be dealing with 
fruit flies for the rest of my life. I also was not 
sure when I was in medical school that I wanted 
to be there, so it wasn't an easy time for me." 

"I grew up in an orphanage. In my own child- 
like way I thought that I had been left there to 
die. I stopped eating and the nun who was in 
charge of the cottage became alarmed and sent 
me to the doctor. He was a very old doctor, a 
retired general surgeon who I remember as being 
a gruff old man. There was not much kindness 
in my childhood and I experienced that as an 
act of incredible kindness. I decided I was going 
to become a doctor." 




Did you find any prejudice in medical school or any 
special treatment? 

"I went to medical school just at the time when 
things had taken a dramatic turnaround from 
having just a few percent of the people in the 
class being women, it had jumped dramatically 
over a one or two year period to about 20 or 25 
percent. So, actually there were more women in 
my class as a medical student than I was used to 
having in my classes as a science major in col- 
lege. In general, I was very much encouraged by 
the people I was around to continue on. The 
medical school I went to, which was Washington 
University in St. Louis, makes a commitment to 
you and really works with you so that you 
graduate from the school. On rare occasions, 
mainly in the surgical specialties, and also 
OB/Gyn, I had a few experiences where I would 
be in a small group and the teacher would not 
look at me. I really felt that I was isolated and 
that there was a problem; it didn't affect me 
deeply other than to make me realize that there 
were people who didn't accept women as being 
physicians. Mainly I feel that I was treated fairly 
well and encouraged." 

"As you know, I come from India. I studied in 
Christian Medical College, which is one of the 
biggest medical institutions in Southeast Asia. 
There is a story about how that was founded. 
The college and hospital were founded by an 
American missionary, Ida Scudder, at a time 
when women were in need of medical help and 
there were no women doctors in that village. 
They would not go to a male doctor and so they 
died. We have a huge Moslem population where 
still if they are orthodox they will not be treated 
by male doctors. So, for a long time women 
physicians have been accepted in India." 

"I think the prejudice that I felt began at home. 
When I said I was interested in applying to 
medical school, my grandmother said to me, 
'Why do you want to be a doctor, just marry 
one.' My father, too, would have been very hap- 
py if I were a secretary and married and had 
three children, but he felt obligated to give his 
children the education that they desired, so I 
really didn't get support from home for medical 
school. When I was interviewing for medical 
school I found most of the prejudice by the 
women who interviewed me. I had one woman 
at a state university who felt that in medicine a 
family life and professional life were incompati- 
ble and I think she felt this on the basis of the 
fact that she had been divorced twice and it was 
incompatible for her. When I applied to another 
school, one of the women administrators asked 
me if I was going to medical school to find a 
husband. What I did notice is that the women 




in medical school tended to pair up. For some 
reason or other this was our support system. 
When we entered the wards I think the residents 
were overwhelmed with what to do with us. 
Where were we going to sleep? They hadn't 
figured out these logistics yet. Sometimes I think 
the ego of some of the male residents got bruised 
if you as a female medical student could answer 
questions that they couldn't. Later on in my in- 
terviewing for residencies, I found more prejudice 
at the interviews than in the actual residency ex- 
perience. First of all they wanted to know if you 
were married and if you were planning to have 
children during your residency. One program ex- 
plained that none of their residents ever had 
children. It was highly discouraged during their 
residency there. But I think in dermatology I 
didn't feel any prejudice whatsoever. If anything 
I think patients were thrilled to have women 
doctors." 

"When I was in college I was taking some pre- 
med courses, and I suddenly realized I didn't 
want to become like the people I was taking 
premed courses with. I never met such an in- 
credibly unkind group of people. I remember be- 
ing in a chemistry class and arriving a little late 
only to find out that somehow there wasn't 
enough ingredients to do the experiment. People 
were forever spilling on my laboratory books. It 
was an extremely competitive premed. Shortly 
after I finished, I taught in high school for 
awhile and then I was married. My husband had 
a Ph.D. in philosophy and was having a difficult 
time getting started and at that time I had com- 
pleted all the premed requirements and had 
taken the test. He couldn't get a job with any 
permanency. It was my husband who asked me 
whether or not I would go to medical school. I 
said, only if you promise that when I finish, we 
will have a family. In the meantime I developed 
TB and was in a sanitarium for a while. We 
couldn't have children because it was a resistant 
form and I was on TB medications for about 
three years. While I was recovering from TB I 
started medical school and I finished medical 
school a year after I finished taking the pills. 
And then for reasons I didn't understand my 
husband kept putting off having children until 
when I finished my residency he informed me 
that he had found someone else." 

How has being a doctor changed your sense of who 
you are? 

"Marriage plays an extremely important role in 
that. I married a doctor and in India many of 
our marriages are arranged. They try to see 
which would be a better companion so it was 
naturally assumed that I should marry a doctor. 
He would understand the hours I put in or 



would be able to be supportive. At the end of 
one year my husband said maybe I should stop 
for awhile and stay at home. He was much 
older, and he was already established in practice. 
So I did stay home and when 1 stayed home I 
thought, 'Well why not have another kid?' I got 
twins. I wanted to run away sometimes." 

"I married a fellow medical student. I had taken 
time off to do research and so he was ahead of 
me and started his internship in another loca- 
tion. I did my own thing which was graduate 
work at that time. When I decided to go back 
into clinical medicine and do an internship 
which was very important for me in terms of my 
personal development, I was surprised to find 
that the man whom I had emotionally supported 
very much during his training wasn't willing to 
do the same for me. Our marriage didn't survive 
the internship. I found myself on my own again, 
which I had not planned when I initially got 
married, but I had to make decisions for myself 
which in a sense was very freeing. When I finish- 
ed my residency I was able to choose any city to 
move to and look into the best job opportunity. 
I think it takes somebody who is very supportive 
and understanding to marry a woman in 
medicine." 

"I'm single and I've never been married. I just 
didn't fit very well into the system. I had dif- 
ferent ideas about how things should be done, 
which were not given much credence or support 
among my male colleagues. I'm sort of a creative 
person and I think medical education is very 
rigid, it's very structured, it's a lot like the Ar- 
my. At first I got very depressed. I think work- 
ing through that and coming to my own sense 
of self in a rigid system but not being dominated 
or changed by it was a really good experience for 
me. I learned to assert myself. I learned to play 
by the rules on the surface but meanwhile keep- 
ing my own sense of self and my own values in- 
tact. Just going through this process turned me 
into a very independent person. I think it was 
my internship that finally completed the process 
I was an intern and I made decisions on all sorts 
of things in the middle of the night on my own. 
It made me realize that I was my own person 
and that my judgment was as good as anybody 
else's. I'm very independent and I don't feel that 
I need somebody else to take care of me. When I 
was on call, I was it! I didn't have to go through 
a growth process to be given a lot of authority. I 
think that in this society, especially now that 
we're all moving around and there are not ex- 
tended families, that it's very difficult for women 
or anybody to raise children in this culture. 
There isn't a lot of societal support for the child 
rearing process. It's not valued. I think that 
anyone and especially women who are trying to 




develop a career are sort of in a system where 
the society in general doesn't provide a means so 
that women or whoever is doing most of the 
child rearing gets support and I think that's a 
problem for all professional women." 

"That is what I am. I am a doctor, I am a wife 
and I am a mother of three children. And those 
three children have nobody but me. Now that 
they are older; my daughter is a freshman in 
high school, she is 14, and the twins are 12, I 
work full time now — 40 hours. I don't have a 
private practice. I am free on weekends and 
evening. Because my husband is in private prac- 
tice and he is on call 24 hours, I am the one 
who takes care of the children and the home. I 
like that, that's what I am, and I like to take 
control of whatever I do. But I get upset about 
what I did not achieve. In eight years my col- 
leagues are all chairmen and all that. I lost that 
eight years. I cannot catch up. My whole thing 
has to be complete. Success to me or to an In- 
dian way of thinking is not just career it's got to 
be a mixture of everything." 

What is different about the way you practice 
medicine because you are a woman? 

"I'm interested in the course my career has 
taken, because when I left Washington Universi- 
ty I really didn't respect the way medicine was 
practiced and I didn't want to have anything to 
do with a medical system that I thought was 
abusive to both the patients and the people whc 
were practicing it — the crazy hours, the way 
doctors, especially at university hospitals, were 
very competitive. People lied, people would say, 
Oh that's a stupid idea; one professor to 
another. Then they would take it and they 
would use it. There were things that I really 
didn't like about the system and so I decided 
that I was not going to be a clinician because I 
did not want to participate in this kind of 
system; It was awful, so I did two things; one, I 
started volunteering at community clinics and 
got in touch with what was going on in the 
women's movement, women's health care, and 
learning about the whole women's self-help 
movement. Also, I started moving toward think- 
ing how I had always wanted to be a scientist 
anyway, would go into pathology and have a 
career in research. I was very interested in im- 
munology and thought I would just leave this 
mad world of sickness and doctoring. For awhile 
I had these two parallel courses of working at 
community clinics, and going along a pretty 
traditional career path in pathology. I did an in- 
ternship to prove to myself that I could do it 
and then I went to Stanford University where I 
was in the Pathology Department. At the same 
time I was working first as a volunteer and then 



getting paid at the clinic of which I'm actually 
the director now. I started working there one 
night a week. At first I really loved pathology, it 
was interesting, and I loved autopsies — reading 
a patient's chart and then getting in there and 
seeing what really happened. There came a point 
where I decided that what I really like was the 
outpatient work at the clinic. I was able to train 
myself as basically a general practice outpatient 
physician and realized that this was a way. My 
main job, my medical director job, is 28 hours a 
week; it's 18 hours patient care and 10 hours ad- 
ministrative. It's a really interesting kind of 
clinic. It's almost all women. We take care of 
people in general with very simple problems and 
then we refer more complicated cases. We train 
community people to be medical assistants and 
counselors. We are really strong on health 
education and helping people to make their own 
decisions about what kind of options they have 
for taking care of their medical problem. This is 
a low paying but very rewarding job. It's a place 
where I feel that there is support for women's 
values and I'm excited about working in a 
medical setting where women's values, being gen- 
tle, not being real aggressive are respected. In 
medicine it's all getting money. .money., money, 
and I feel like a ray of hope in the darkness. It's 
very difficult to maintain our posture, but 
everyone there is committed to patient educa- 
tion. We are really committed to what we are 
doing. It's very hard, but I feel good about being 
a part of something good. I have the wonderful 
blessing of not having people call me in the mid- 
dle of the night. I don't have to work on the 
weekend. I do pottery and I'm able to truly and 
wholeheartedly enjoy that. I guess I have later in. 
my life come to that sense of self that you were 
talking about." 

"One would hope that women wouldn't botch it 
up as badly as men have. That's what we are 
hoping — that we will have learned by their 
mistakes and we will have our own experiences. 
We need nurturing in this society. I think we ex- 
pect more from a woman. I think we expect 
more from professional women. I have many pa- 
tients who come to me and say, thank God I 
found a woman physician, because, frankly, I 
figure out that in order for you to have gotten 
through at this time you have to be good... or 
better than most. My experience of other 
women professionals I've met, is that money isn't 
the bottom line. Women expect women to be 
better than men. This is where criticism of 
women by other women stems from, is that 
women really expect other women to be better 
than the men and when that falls short, that's 
when the criticism comes. What I think is that it 
has to do with the combination of being a 



perfectionist or having some notion of doing 
one's job well, and at the same time being nur- 
turing, and when a woman in professional posi- 
tions does not do both those things, then the 
criticism is there, because the expectations are 
there. I find that true almost everywhere. I have 
a large female population of patients and they 
tell me if I have not explained their mam- 
mogram to their satisfaction. I hear about it. 
Women bring their husbands and their fathers 
to me, because they want a woman's job to be 
done. I think there is another point to it and 
that is when women talk together there is a 
group of conversations we have that I think con- 
sists in telling stories. We tell stories about our 
families. We tell stories about the people we 
know. The so-called gossip is really a recitation 
of a short history; it's a moral history of some 
kind. We are fascinated by historical progress 
and how this episode came about. Frankly, 
when we really think about what a history and 
physical examination is, it's an interaction with 
a patient that is quite similar to interactions 
women have traditionally had in which there is 
a real search for: I wonder why this happens?" 

"I remember very well when my husband was at- 
tending a trauma case and he said some woman 
shot her husband and I wanted to know who, 
what and why. He said I don't know, he didn't 
even find out. I said, 'how can you not find 
out?' I want to know why she shot him. I think 
the history is incomplete there." 

"Also with the treatment, if you don't really 
understand, you can't just give advice. I think 
that's part of our need and our curiosity which 
is a different kind of curiosity from that 
demonstrated in little mechanical devices that 
fascinate men." 

"This is what make women better doctors. These 
are the things that are important in healing. It's 
not mechanical, it's not a science, it's an art. 
They did a comparison of male and female 
medical students and male students were more 
confident than competent and female medical 
students were more competent than confident." 

"I think there is a certain fascination about peo- 
ple's lives and medicine is just one aspect of be- 
ing fascinated. I used to read, I loved novels, and 
I think I probably have read every single novel 
from the 18th century on. What happened to 
me in medicine is that one year I just couldn't 
do it anymore. I thought to myself, now why 
can't I read anymore? The reason was that the 
lives I was listening to were far more exciting. 
One's practice is fascinating." 

"Listening is half of it. Even cancer is an at- 
titude. It can be beaten if a person has a good 
attitude. We treat not only with the gadgets, but 



listening to a person. I think half the people 
come to us because something is bothering them 
psychologically and they just want somebody to 
listen to them. I've had many who will come in 
and I ask a simple thing and they burst out cry- 
ing and they start telling me what the problem 
is. 

"Many times people tell you stories or tell you 
things about themselves that they never have 
told anybody else. It's almost as if you close the 
door, like the Catholic confessional, and they 
tell you things that are incredible. It's almost the 
telling of it that's curative, if you haven't done 
anything. I don't see anything that I do 
necessarily being different than what other 
women do. I did many jobs before I went into 
medicine. I worked in an office and all the 
women got together. I worked as a lab tech in a 
hospital. The only thing is that you have more 
knowledge to distinguish whether or not there is 
a physical problem or an emotional disturbance. 
Most of the physical things we see, frankly, if 
you can't treat it simply, you probably can't 
treat it very well, and we know that. I think 
women are more likely to realize that." 

"You have to have a profession so you are able 
to stand on your own feet, so you don't have to 
be dependent on somebody for economic 
reasons. Maybe our great-grandmothers and 
mothers did not have that." 

"I do a lot of consulting in a psychiatric unit 
and the requirement is that all people admitted 
there have a history and physical, so I do many 
of them, and I have been surprised at the 
amount of psychosis and psychotic reactions oc- 
casioned by marital and family discord. I find it 
incredible. Many women functioned relatively 
well until marriage and then discord brings on a 
psychotic reaction, brought on by stress, and by 
the fact that they are physically dependent." 

"Also what is very interesting is that when these 
people begin to get better the family begins to 
object. Oftentimes what happens is that the 
woman feels trapped in marriage. And I have to 
say this because I think it's something that per- 
tains to our discussion. In talking with several of 
these women the essential trap, the same trap 
that I experienced, is that marriage is forever. 
You keep on plugging at a marriage when, in 
fact, there may not be a basis for that kind of 
hope. A marriage promise is actually a hope not 
a promise." 

"I guess I don't like what I see going on in socie- 
ty. I can't point to alcohol or drugs. I think that 
what I see as the major problem is just a real 
over emphasis on money. It really creates a lot 
of hardships. You need to have money to buy 
any kind of respect, medical services, education 



for your children, and it's getting worse. I'm a 
physician, and I work at a job where I make a 
nice middle class living, but I have to watch 
what I buy. I realize what it's like for people who 
don't have my salary. More and more I see ser- 
vices and educational opportunities falling away. 
It's like there is less and less that is available to 
people who don't have a whole lot of money. So 
the pressure that I feel in my own life is, do I 
continue to do what I find rewarding personally? 
There's a lot of pressure to jump into that high- 
pressured, high money-making, high-stress world. 
A lot of the things that people are killing 
themselves for or driving themselves crazy for we 
don't need. We don't need computer games, we 
don't need computers at all. We don't need a 
whole lot of this stuff. Yeah, it makes life easier, 
but at a great cost. When I see Humana Hospital 
and how much money they are getting to do ar- 
tificial hearts and this high tech experimental 
work when my clinic is having a harder and 
harder time getting money from the state to do 
basic immunizations for free to families who 
practically have no food, I just know the values 
are crazy. I live near Stanford and I'm in family 
practice basically, so I go to gynecology, 
pediatrics and internal medicine conferences, if 
they are relevant to what I'm doing. I went to 
this conference on Cesarean Sections and the 
professor at Stanford was saying how at private 
hospitals now, especially smaller hospitals, the 
Cesarean Section rate has gone up to 40%. 
There was a discussion about, why this is. It has 
to do with malpractice. If there is a blip on a 
fetal monitor, they just section immediately 
because even if the baby is a disaster if there ha: 
been a Cesarean Section done immediately they 
won't be sued. At the first sign that anything 
was going wrong, they intervened. If they try to 
do what is medically indicated or medically best, 
solely on medical criteria, they are putting 
themselves at risk." 

"Malpractice rates are making it impossible for 
obstetricians to practice. A number have actual- 
ly stopped practicing because they can't get in- 
surance. They can't deliver the volume that 
would enable them to earn even what you call a 
middle class living." 

"Look at what's going on. I am practicing 
without malpractice insurance because they are 
not covering community clinics anymore. Most 
of our people don't even have food. In this 
climate no lawyer's going to take their case and 
especially if we don't have insurance. I have 
hardly any assets and I have more than anybody 
else at the clinic. We just decided that we were 
going to stay open and we are small enough. 
There are a lot of doctors who won't practice in 
our clinic anymore. I see this insidious and terri- 



ble effect of different kinds of money things, 
whether it be insurance money or just a general 
lack of taking responsibility. People are running 
scared. I think it's real sad." 

"We all got into medicine because it was noble 
and respected. But not anymore. I think most 
physicians got into medicine because they are 
trying to help. When we tell our children to get 
into business, it's almost blasphemous because 
we come from a long line of doctors. It is unfor- 
tunate but I think society has brought this on 
itself maybe due to greed." 

"People keep telling me I'm a dying breed. I've 
worked at an HMO for two years and I worked 
also at Northwestern and Workers' Compensa- 
tion. I'm in private practice, after having done 
those things, primarily because those positions 
weren't acceptable to me. One was always being 
penalized for having done one's best. I think 
there will always be a group of people who will 
do private practice and will offer an option apart 
from established guaranteed forms of care. I 
don't know how it is in your hospital, but in- 
dependent physicians associations are now form- 
ing throughout Illinois, which are groups of 
physicians who are forming to guarantee that 
third party payers like insurance companies, 
HMO's etc., will have to meet certain standards 
and attain quality care. They will tell govern- 
ment bodies not to interfere with what should 
the physician's — the direct physician-patient 
relationship." 

"I think we are beginning to realize that in order 
for physicians to do their job they have to be in 
control of the whole system. Once that happens 
I think there will be more respect for physicians 
because physicians are going to be doing the job 
frankly that they surrendered during the 60's 
and 70's when third party payment became 
almost gratis. The other thing is that we have to 
support such efforts and be involved. I've been 
spending about 15-20 hours a week working on 
our IPA formation and I think it's something 
that will definitely be a way in the future where 
physicians will frankly earn back the respect 
they lost." 

"Many physicians are making large quantities of 
money and frankly they have not been doing it 
by offering quality care. Let's be honest. I think 
we've pushed our fees up so that we've 
bankrupted Medicare and Medicaid, and we've 
bankrupted most of the fee-for-service insurance 
companies. We have done unnecessary pro- 
cedures, we've looked at technology that offered 
very little in terms of quality of life, but just of- 
fered quantity of life, if even that, I'm not sure 
about this mechanical heart business. It doesn't 
seem to offer either. All we've done is push high- 



tech to the point of having lost." 

"I work in a County Hospital, geriatric chronic 
disease hospital. We are probably 10 years 
behind. Our beds are all full. Money is the 
thing. We have multiple problems. Every pa- 
tient, maybe 60 years is the youngest patient, 
has multiple problems. We are going to have 
more hospitals like our hospital because people 
are getting older." 

"The sadness is that pneumonia was the old 
man's friend and what's happening is that we 
are prolonging life that frankly should not be 
prolonged. In the old days when the individual 
person came and paid the bill we did not do 
this. This is really a phenomenon o{ the 60's 
and 70's in which there is third party payment. 
We are prolonging lives and we are saying to 
families, whatever you want to be done, we are 
putting the burden on the patient and the pa- 
tient's family when it was never their burden to 
begin with. It was clinical judgment. Are we do- 
ing more harm than good by treating this 
pneumonia? If somebody has a brain tumor, you 
don't treat pneumonia." 

"We are all very caring physicians. As I said to 
my mother I don't want somebody jumping up 
and down on my chest or my grandmother's 
chest. DNR* we write, the person has a family. 
One daughter says DNR, the other one says, 
don't know, and if they do not resuscitate the 
hospital is going to. It's terrible." 

"In my experience nobody ever gets that whole 
family together and says, 'To prolong her life 
would be torture.'" 

"It's part of the caring of the person to have 
these things understood. The ethical basis of our 
oath is not to cure anybody. We never promised 
to cure anybody. The only thing we promised 
was to do no harm, and when treatment itself 
does more harm than good we are not allowed 
to do it. It's an equivalent analogy to a court of 
law. We are not our patient's agent. A lawyer is 
not his client's agent. He is his client's agent on- 
ly in that area which is not illegal. If he is asked 
to do something illegal by his client, he has ac- 
cess to association with the court, to which his 
primary responsiblity lies. He cannot be asked to 
do anything illegal. A physician can also not 
ethically do something that causes harm without 
any chance of good. We are not aware of this, 
we don't talk about this, we don't say, 'Your 
parent right now is getting to a point where he 
is probably going to have cardiopulmonary ar- 
rest. He is going to die. Because he is in a 
hospital one of the things we do is car- 
diopulmonary resuscitation. This would not be 
appropriate in your parent's case because it 



would just prolong his suffering without offering 
him anything of good. I, as a physician, cannot 
allow this to happen. All I'm asking you is to 
understand this and for us to talk about it, so 
that you come to the same understanding. Even 
though legally in the State of Illinois we are sup- 
posed to ask for permission, ethically, it has 
nothing to do with the family, except that they 
understand thoroughly that prolonging the per- 
son's life would be to torture them, which 
ethically we are not allowed to do. In the old 
days, we used to have this old ethics course. 
Somebody comes into your office and says, 'My 
hand has done harm, so therefore according to 
the Bible I should have my arm cut off. I would 
like it to be done on Thursday morning in elec- 
tive surgery.' We cannot do that, even if that 
person is mentally well, whatever. We can't do 
that because we have a claim to a higher source, 
i.e., Association of Physicians who agree that 
one cannot do harm." 

"What I hear you saying I agree with entirely. 
But what's happening is that the legal system is 
not protecting physicians at this point who do 
that. Back to the C-section thing, the truth is 
these physicians would basically like to do the 
right thing. They are going nutty with this kind 
of anxiety that the system is putting on them. I 
would like them to stand up and say, 'Okay, 
we're going to make a stand.' The Association of 
OB/Gyn's, 'We're going to take a stand, we're 
going to practice medicine as best we can, and 
we're going to support one another.' Part of my 
problem is I find it impossible to deal with those 
stresses, so in my own way I've avoided them as 
much as possible." 

You have to make a choice. All of us, each one, 
has to make a choice of what we want to do 
with our life. What are our priorities? Then if we 
are happy with that, then we can be at peace. 
As the years go by our priorities will change. 
Some days I think what do I want to do most in 
life. I want to get in bed with a good book and 
relax." 

"I think that physicians are under terrible 
pressure these days." 

"More so women physicians because we have the 
stress of the superwoman syndrome. We are talk- 
ing about single women who have a job and 
they maybe have kids and they think they have 
to do everything to the best of their ability and 
have to do it well. The problem is going to re- 
main for a long time." 

'"I'm so pleased we have women in medicine and 
more of a shift in values to thinking about kindness 
and quality of life rather than technology and com- 
petition and making lots of income and what I guess 
I would think of as more typical male values or 



something other than the ones that we've kind of 
nurtured, trying to be helpful." 

"The thing is that you are rewarded in a system 
for doing procedures. There are a lot of things 
that the system rewards you for that are irrele- 
vant to good medical practice. I do a history and 
physical plus a little treatment to use the treat- 
ment to see if that's what the problem is or 
that's not what the problem is. So I've seen the 
patient several times and have quite a relation- 
ship developed with them before I order much in 
the way of tests, unless a person comes in with 
an obvious fracture. For a lot of things, if you 
went to a speed mill doctor, first of all they 
don't want to get sued, they don't have any 
time, so they order a bunch of tests. You go to a 
neurologist and everyone who comes in with 
headaches, -CAT Scan, EMG's, skull films. I 
don't know if they do skull films anymore, 
they're out. CAT scan is in." 

"I think there are a lot of problems in medicine. 
I don't have a good handle on what's going on 
out there in the real world because I live in this 
eddy where things don't operate that way. But, I 
think it's that we as a group have a really 
healthy ethical attitude towards our work, but 
I'm not sure, if I get sick tomorrow, what's going 
to happen to me as a patient and what kind of 
system am I going to be in as a patient. I have a 
lot of concerns that we're somewhat of a minori- 
ty and that there are people in the system who 
share our views, but as you found out working 
in an HMO, no matter how beautiful your 
ideals are, if you're an internist, you can't do it, 
so you say, 'Well this is what I want to do 
because I don't want to be up all night in 
private practice. I'm just going to work in the 
system.' And you do sort of a semi-job with pain 
in your heart or you just turn it off and become 
this medical zombie. I have run into those peo- 
ple. They don't think anymore. I have concerns 
that the forces in society are creating that kind 
of environment and I'm not sure how much ef- 
fect people like us have on that." 

"I'm just incredibly encouraged by this IPA 
business and I really think that it's the beginn- 
ing. The AMA in the 1880's and 1914's and 
1935's, they did incredible things and then they 
sort of blew it. Now I'm ashamed to say I belong 
to the AMA, but this is the only way I can get 
my insurance. I went to the first AMA meeting 
in which they talked about fees and preserving 
fees and I got sick to my stomach and had to 
leave. The AMA is too cumbersome, it can't do 
the job, but I think the IPA is a beginning. I 
went to an ethics conference two months ago in 
New Orleans. It was sponsored by the Hastings 
Center, which is a center for the study of profes- 




sional ethics. One of the founding members was 
the Kennedy family. Also it was sponsored by 
the AMA, the first ethics conference the AMA 
has ever sponsored. People just like us in this 
group were there. There were physicians who 
had been in practice for years that didn't know 
what the DRG'S* meant ethically to them, there 
were people from HMO's who hadn't quite got- 
ten to realize that HMO's were not preventive 
care and you couldn't do preventive care in an 
HMO. What it was, was a cheaper form of 
delivering acute care. It's cheaper and so it's not 
as gentle as beeper service, but what is publicized 
as preventive health that people think they're 
getting , and that you as a physician think you 
are giving, isn't exactly what the sytem is setup 
to deliver. Although I think in the long run 
preventive care will ultimately be the cheapest 
form of medicine of all. But there were other 
people who frankly were in ethics committees in 
their hospital dealing with the new standard of 
DNR's, there were obstetricians there who were 
wondering 'Well my premium is $50,000. What 
am I to do?' They were asking financial ques- 
tions in terms of what ethics are. They were ask- 
ing personal questions and interpersonal 
relationship-with- patient questions, and nobody 
had any answers, but it was incredible to see 500 
people asking these things. I think that the 
AMA is going to sponsor a number of things. 
It's very interesting but in our hospital, they are 
talking about forming ethics committees. This is 
a beginning and we have to support these things 
even though you may be tired from the clinic, 
you may be tired from your job too." 

"I think in our time in our practice we have 
seen physicians go from people who were 
respected to people now who are fair game." 

"I think that we are wrong if we don't agree that 
there have been abuses and problems. In- 
terestingly, what I find incredible is that I'm 
bearing the brunt of a reputation that I had ab- 
solutely nothing to do with. I think Medicare 
and Medicaid and the third party payers, by just 
supporting everything really did a great deal of 
harm. Physicians previously did 10 to 20 percent 
charity. Now we are in a situation where 
because the malpractice is so high we can't do 
charity." 

"It sounds like all four of you have been very 
creative, in a political sphere and in your practice 
and the kind of life and lifestyle you want to live 
with practicing medicine, with valuing family and 
ethics, and being able to put all of that together in 
different ways that fit for each of you. Sometimes 
maybe some parts of it not well, and some parts of it 
conflict with society with all of the problems that 
we've got. Where you've got people who are self- 



destructive, who are out to destroy you as well, in 
spite of the help that you are giving, seems like an 
enormous task to try to take it all on. You've done it 
without models that you can turn to. You've all gone 
and found your own. I was also thinking that maybe 
we ought to stop pretty soon and have lunch." 

* Illinois Physicians Association 
**Diagnostic Reference Group 




'The momcn in medical school tended to pair up." 



11 





BOOK REVIEW 






Sheri Bortz 

SYMPATHY AND SCIENCE: Women Physi- 
cians in American Medicine 
Regina Markell Morantz-Sanchez 
Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1985 

SYMPATHY AND SCIENCE by Regina 
Markell Morantz-Sanchez is a very readable 
historical work which should be of interest to a 
wide range of readers with interests in women's 
history, the history of medicine, women in 
medicine, and feminism in general. 

The book chronicles the history of American 
women physicians, with concentration on the 
era between 1849, when Elizabeth Blackwell 
became the first woman to receive a formal 
medical degree in the United States, through the 
struggle in the nineteenth and early twentieth 
century for a woman's right to a medical educa- 
tion, to the low point in female participation in 
the medical profession from 1930 to the 1960's. 
The scene is set by a brief discussion of the role 
of women in the healing arts, midwifery, 
homeopathy, and folk medicine, during the col- 
onial era and concludes with a review of the cur- 
rent dramatic increase in the numbers of women 
in medicine since the late 1960's. 

What makes this book particularly interesting is 
its focus on the dual aspects of healing — sym- 
pathy and science — and uses that dichotomy as 
a way of looking at the role of women in 
medicine and, more broadly, at the age old issue 
of whether the perceived differences between 
men and women in society are the result of 
nature or nurture. This issue was as hot an issue 
among feminists in the nineteenth century as it 
is now. Are women endowed with a morally 
superior nature, superior intuition, superior com- 
municative and nurturing abilities that allow 
them to be a different and perhaps superior type 
ot medical practitioner or will the medical prac- 
tice of women, given the equivalent education, 
be the siTne as that of men? One way Morantz- 



The Women's Medical College of Pennsylvania, Class of 1891 

Sanchez illustrates this in the book is by com- 
paring the medical careers of Elizabeth Blackwell 
and Mary Putnam Jacobi. 

Elizabeth Blackwell, the first woman to receive a 
medical degree from a formal medical school in 
the United States, came to medicine with a 
religious and spiritual calling. She believed in an 
holistic approach to medicine. "Women 
students," she regretted, "were as yet too ac- 
customed to accept the government and instruc- 
tion of men as final, and it hardly occurs to 
them to question it. They must be taught that 
methods and conclusions formed by one-half of 
the race only, must necessarily require revision 
as the other half of humanity rises into con- 
scious responsibility." Frustrated by the lack of 
opportunities for a medical education for women 
in the male institutions, Elizabeth Blackwell 
founded the Women's Medical College of the 
New York Infirmary in 1868. 

In contrast, Mary Jacobi's interest in medical 
work was first and foremost the study of science. 
After initial training in the United States she 
pursued advanced medical and scientific training 
in Paris where she graduated with high honors 
and a bronze medal for her thesis in 1871. She 
hailed the separation of medicine from the 
mystic and demonic influences of the past. She 
wrote that the duty of the physician was to 
"take conditions which science has abstracted 
for the purpose of thought and to recombine 
them for the purpose of life." In general she felt 
that moral issues were irrelevant to the practice 
of medicine. She was a great believer in co- 
education for women in order that they should 
be truly the equal of men in medical practice. 
She refused faculty positions at the women's 
medical schools, feeling that she would be 
isolated from the cutting edge of medical ad- 
vancements and that it would be suicidal for her 
scientific career. She successfully undertook a 
career of academic practice in a co-educational 
institution. Mary Jacobi was aware of the bar- 



12 



riers to women but she advocated active struggle 
within the already established male system, 
rather than creation of separate institutions 
which would offer equal education but a focus 
on special female values and talents. 

The life stories of these and other women of the 
early days of women in medicine are used to il- 
lustrate the other themes of the book, a major 
one being the pros and cons of separate educa- 
tion for women. Is the value of a co-education 
for women doctors in an almost entirely male 
run institution, with superior funding and easier 
access to established leaders in the various 
medical fields, outweighed by the benefit of ex- 
cellent role models and moral support in a 
medical school run for and by woman profes- 
sionals? We see the evolution over the decades of 
a series of women's medical colleges from their 
inception to becoming the major source of 
medical education for women in the late nine- 
teenth century, until finally the Women's 
Medical College of Pennsylvania, the last 
medical college open only to female students, 
becomes co-educational in 1971. 

Another major theme of the book concerns the 
choices and juggling act that women are faced 
with in dealing with balancing the roles of pro- 
fessional career — woman, mother, and wife. 
Mary Putnam Jacobi discusses marriage with a 
group of female medical students. "The question 

of marriage which complicates everything else 

in the life of women, cannot fail to complicate 
their professional life. It does so, whether the 
marriage exists or does not exist, that is as much 
[a problem] for unmarried as for married 

women " It is also interesting to realize 

through reading the letters of these nineteenth 
century women that although in many ways 
there is more support in the current society for 
women with professional careers, the underlying 
feeling of insecurity many women still feel con- 
cerning their ability to juggle several important 
roles was almost the same in the nineteenth cen- 
tury as it is today. Even in these liberated times, 
most men do not lie awake at night worrying if 
their career choice will allow them adequate 
time and energy to nurture children and give 
emotional support to a wife. 

Also discussed is the struggle of women to create 
opportunities for themselves in a medical en- 
vironment which was often hostile to them. This 
involved the struggle to obtain places in medical 
schools, financing education, finding 
postgraduate and professional positions. An in- 
teresting story is the history of women in the 
public health field. The public health field was 
conceived by women physicians and reformers in 
the nineteenth century. At its inception it was a 



field organized almost entirely by women physi- 
cians involved in teaching health classes to 
women, running infirmaries for poor people, ac- 
tive in labor reforms, sanitation, family plann- 
ing, and so forth to improve the general health 
status of the community. In the late nineteen- 
twenties and thirties, male graduates of the new- 
ly created co-educational public health schools 
took over the administration of the public 
health institutions. At the same time the female 
colleges were one by one closing or merging with 
their male counterparts. Generally the female 
teaching staff was not hired by the equivalent 
co-educational institution. With this shift in 
gender, the interest in public health focused 
more on bacteriology rather than social reform 
and education. 

Morantz-Sanchez ends her book in a discussion 
of the recent influx of women into the medical 
profession. She writes, "One can hope only that 
at least some of the concerns that they [women] 
brought to medical practice in the past — an em- 
phasis on humane care and a concern for the 
profession's responsibility to the community — 
will occupy center stage in the practice of 
medicine once again." 



Shen Bortz, M.D., is Medical Director of OUR HEALTH CENTER, 
a community clinic, located in Palo Alto, California and serving low in- 
come people in the midpeninsula area of the San Francisco suburban 
community. The clinic offers low cost outpatient services and health 
education to an ethnically mixed, largely medically indigent population. 
At present, like our predecessor institutions in the old public health 
field, the clinic has an entirely female staff. 



13 





TECHNIQUES 





BODY IMAGERY AND 
GESTALT WORK IN THE 
REDUCTION OF 
STRESS,ANXIETY, PAIN 
AND CONFLICTS. 

Carol Hunter 

This unique technique is a combination of self- 
generated sensory imagery and Gestalt dialoguing. 
The helper operates on the premise that unfinish- 
ed experiences are stored, not only in portions of 
the brain, but also in the body. Storage of these 
experiences will manifest as physiological and 
psychological symptoms such as hypertension, 
ulcers, migraines, nervousness, explosivenesss, in- 
somnia, narcolepsy, obsessive-compulsive 
behaviors, phobias, depression and anxiety. 

Unlike most cognitive therapies which deal with 
the helpee's thoughts about and memories of the 
stored events, the body imagery and gestalt work 
deal directly with the experience. To further ex- 
plain the technique, some basic components of ex- 
perience must be analyzed. Let us say that a given 
event occurs: a male principal chastises a female 
teacher in front of some other faculty members or 
a husband "puts down" his wife. The female ex- 
periences the event in many ways. 1) There is a 
visual picture or tape of the scene. 2) There is an 
auditory tape of the scene (including what the 
male says, what the female says, and also what the 
female thinks but does not say). 3) There is the 
emotional experience of the scene. 4) There is a 
belief system or Gestalt from which the female 
operates within the context of any scene. 5) There 
is a physiological sensate experience associated 
with the scene. 

A scene such as the one above may be so painful 
that the female effectively blocks the cognitive 
memory of the scene. The next day she has a terri- 
ble migraine and cannot function at work. She 
goes to the psychologist because she is upset and 
has a headache. 

The work begins with the migraine. Have the 
helpee begin by focusing her attention on the 
migraine and locate it; then have the helpee 
describe her experience of the migraine pain. You 
ask questions about the size of the pain, the shape, 
the weight, the color, the texture. These questions 
are fairly safe and deal with the physical ex- 
periences that are stored. The next level will go 
deeper into the stored experience. Here the helper 
watches for the clues about what is stored in the 
migraine and may begin responding with Gestalt 
questions to the helpee's verbalizations about the 
experience. Begin by asking about the sound of the 
headache. If the helpee says that it is making a 
sound, have her imitate it. Imitating the sound 
may allow the helpee to experience a deeper level 
of the migraine, such as hidden crying or anger. 



The helper, picking up on this clue, can then ask, 
"Who is crying?" or "Whom are you angry with?" 
If the helpee can not go further with the sound or 
says that there is not a sound, then go on to ask if 
there are any words or phrases there. If there are, 
let the helpee voice all of the words or phrases, 
again asking the Gestalt questions to facilitate the 
experience. 

If there is still no breakthrough, the helper may 
ask if there are any feelings associated with the 
migraine. If the helpee expresses any emotions 
toward the pain, the helper may then guide the 
helpee into a dialogue with the pain. The helper 
may also ask if the helpee sees any pictures or im- 
ages attached to the migraine. At this point, the 
male's face or scene with the male may appear. 
Have the helpee move into a dialogue with the 
male. Help her to say not only the things she said, 
but also the things she felt and thought but did 
not say. 

The goal of this technique is to facilitate the 
helpee's completion of the unfinished experience 
and to help her to own and experience feelings 
that she had disowned because she believes them 
bad. When the helpee finishes with the scene, she 
may find that the headache disappears completely, 
or she may find that it has moved or changed its 
size and shape. If this is the case, start the process 
again. Both helper and helpee may find a deeper, 
earlier unfinished experience (or experiences) which 
is (are) associated with the helpee's migraine. For 
instance, she may have had a very unsatisfactory 
relationship with a threatening father. 

This process may be used with a variety of 
physical ailments. It may also be used with 
psychological symptoms that seem to have no 
physiological components. Once the process is 
begun, physiological reactions may surface to work 
on. 

Dr. Hunter received her doctoral degree from the University of 
Southern California. She does therapy in private practice in Newport 
Beach. This article is based on a workshop she conducted for the 
American Psychological Association Annua! Meeting in Anaheim, 
California. 



14 






POETRY 





THE STRAWBERRY 
WINDOW CAT 

My cat sits in the strawberry window 

of summer sunning herself. 

She knows the poetry of small, dry things, 

like sticks and leaves and grass. 

She watches bird's feet on the flowers. 

She has a rhythm of her own. 

She dances and she walks and sleeps 

carrying a kind of cat-angel inside of her. 

Marion Schoeberlein 




WORKING WOMAN 

I open the envelope 
and the photographs 
spill across my desk: 
Earth from space, 

Saturn's wings, 
Jupiter and Ganymede, 
a solar prominence. 

I say to Professor X 
as I scoop up the cards 
to show him, 
Would you like to see 
something gorgeous? 

Professor X says 
Your grandson? 

Helen Herbstman 



STORM 



Beethoven walked stonily 
through his rooms 
creating symphonies 
out of the storms 
in his heart; 
the man who was afraid 
of prayer made God listen 
to him in the crash 
of music. 

Marion Schoeberlein 



"Young Woman Singing to a Bird" 
Joe Ann Marshall Allen 



15 





POETRY 





PASSAGE 

Hold up the mirror, show me my face; 

show me what I have become. 

Ah, there are lines I can never erase. 

I remember the years of ruffles and lace 

that linger forever for some. 

Hold up the mirror, show me my face. 

I have been earning a sense of place. 
I know where my heart comes from, 
yet there are lines I will never erase. 

Youth is the runner losing the race 

age tallies the aggregate sum. 

Hold up the mirror, show me my face. 

These are hard years to welcome with grace, 

marking the beat of the drum. 

Ah, there are lines I don't wish to erase. 

I am content, there's no need to trace 
what memory is eager to plumb. 
Hold up the mirror, show me my face. 
Ah, there are lines I would never erase. 



TANG FIGURINE 

This dancer, shaped a thousand years ago 
in skinsweet gown, her head inclined, one 
arm 
uplifted, lets the other fall like a flow 

of rippling water; she leans out of her clay 
to almost take a forward step, 
with absent look her body curves away 

feeling for its next gesture, pace 
suspended like a lingering flute 
on whose notes I travel into self-sustaining 
grace. 

Rose Rosberg 



Joan Ritty 




Moonstones, Susan Boulet, 1976 



16 




HEALING ARTS AND RITUALS 




Greetings! 

It is a pleasure to introduce the creative women 
who share a moment of their lives and their work 
in this issue. They represent contemporary ver- 
sions of one of humankind's most ancient roles, 
"Woman as Healer." It is significant to remember 
that Wise Women were actively practicing their 
healing arts long before the history of Western 
medicine began. Women discovered their powers 
and healing resources through their close relation- 
ship to Earth and the things of Earth. Earth pro- 
cesses and rhythms, sounds and 
movements. ...Earth creatures, plants, and 
forms... Earth as Spirit in Matter: these were the 
original teachers for men and women alike. The 
powers and resources of Earth taught and inspired 
the healer to create and enact healing rituals: 
dances were composed, chants sung, images were 
painted on rock walls or used as decoration on 
body, or to create sacred objects, etc. Today, the 
woman-who-heals is often found practicing an art 
which relinks her to these ancient resources. 

This issue focuses on Wise Woman/Shaman 
Woman as Healer. An ancient tradition has evolv- 
ed into one of the most exciting and fulfilling work 
roles for woman today. As Shaun McNiff notes, 
"The mechanical and technical values of contem- 
porary culture tend to be stereotypically more 
masculine than feminine. Today's renewal of the 
shamanic consciousness through the 
psychotherapeutic use of the arts is largely a female 
phenomenon. With the exception of the discipline 
of psychodrama, women greatly outnumber men 
in the practice of the arts in therapy." (McNiff, 
Arts, p. 23-4. The politico-economic reasons for 
this situation are interesting, and can be found, in 
part, by analogy and contrast with what happened 
to other Wise Women throughout history. See 
Witches, Midlives and Nurses: A History of Women 
Healers, Feminist Press, N.Y. for details.) 

In our culture, the Healer is in a curious position. 
Healing — making sound or whole, restoring to 
health — is, in some ways, less acceptable to us 
than availing ourselves of "quick cures" or 
dependence on another to cure us. While the 
Healer may be needed, more than ever, to assist us 
in our personal and social lives, it is the technician 
who has a corner on the market. Healing devoid 
of concern for the whole person may be cheaper in 
the short run; in terms of a whole life, we are just 
beginning to see the high costs and overlappings of 
psychosomatic illnesses. It is important, therefore, 
to understand the dynamics of healing as an active 
creative process of renewal. 

Healing as a process of renewing — Healing is an art 
and a practice in renewing a healthy balance of 
relationships within oneself, and/or with others. 
Sacred (nonordinary) powers are invoked, and 
vital rituals are enacted, to renew this fragile and 
dynamic balance of well-being. As process, healing 



is expressed through creative acts, e.g., art, dance, 
chant, drama, sound, etc. (on the more formal 
level), and touch, herbs, charms, etc. (on the less 
formal level). As such, the healing process is, and 
has always been , a sacred journey of renewal of 
utmost importance for individual and community 
well-being. 

Healing as active experience — Healing actively in- 
volves all persons concerned. There are levels of 
healing and stages in healing; but wounding/heal- 
ing, like living/dying, are givens in our lives. There 
must be direct experiences of active participation 
in the healing process. No one can provide pills or 
operations to eliminate imbalances in our whole 
person. From this perspective, the conventions of 
modern medicine, which view disease as 
pathological, cure as suppressing symptom, and 
even death as an illness to be overcome, are 
strange abstractions, and subtractions (!), from 
wholly knowing and experiencing our lives. 

Healing as creative process — Think about this as 
you read the experiences of the women in this 
issue: the old Wise Ones knew that life cannot be 
repaired: it must be recreated. There are today, in 
the end, no standard rules and techniques to fit 
creative moments of healing. These moments are 
not manipulated into being. Instead, the Healer 
goes on a journey with her client(s), to create a 
way to reestablish communication, first, by inner 
imagery and dialogue, and secondly, by enabling a 
dialogue that reaches outward beyond the self. 
This journey involves symbolic expressions or acts 
along the way, and ends with a transformation of 
the feelings, attitudes, habits, which precipitated 
the loss of balance in the first place. 

Wise Woman, Woman as Healer: she exists in 
every woman, every one of us, every day. The 
Navajo have a version of her that we can embrace 
on our own journeys. They celebrate Changing 
Woman as the core in the mystery of creation. We 
can consider this archetype in our own evolution 
as Women Healers. We have a real challenge to 
honor her in ourselves, to manifest her in our dai- 
ly acts. It is no small accomplishment to renew life 
with/for another. It is no small journey to take 
the spiral path of healing and emerge at the end 
with greater awareness and responsiveness of self. 
It is awesome work and abiding privilege to pro- 
vide the experiences of transformation for others 
and participate thereby in our own on-going 
change. 

Suzanne Palmer, M.A. A.T.R 
Registered Art Therapist 
Guest Editor 

Suzanne Palmer, M.A., A.T.R. , is an art therapist in Santa Rosa Calif. She 
teaches at Sonoma State University and has conducted annual symposia there 
on healing rituals. She writes: "M~y newest challenge is co-teaching a course at 
Sonoma State University on "The Psychology of Shamanic Thought." My co- 
teacher is a Harvard-trained man with the name of Running Bear' I find it 
quite interesting in psychology these days to see how various pathways are ex- 
ploring ways to weave together. At least, that is a metaphor for myself: I love 
weaving things together." 



17 




HEALING ARTS AND RITUALS 




JOURNEYS INTO COLOR 

Lillian M. Rhinehart, M.A., 

M.F.C.C, ATR 

and Paula Englehorn, M.A., ATR 

As women and as art therapists we have been 
practicing in the specific areas of color and healing 
and spirituality for seven years, each bringing in- 
dividual kinds of training and preparation to the 
work we now share. We have taken leaps of 
significant individual opportunities that have lead 
us to this place in time. Lillian's leap began with a 
significant discovery during a session with a young 
client. Paula's leap started when she entered the 
realm of vision through the art process. Our 
stories weave journeys into color. We would like to 
share these individual journeys which have led us 
to the work we now do together. 

LILLIAN'S JOURNEY 

I am an older woman, approaching 60 years of 
age. I am beginning now to consciously experience 



the fruits of my labor. Several years ago I had the 
opportunity to take a leap beyond what I knew as 
a practicing art therapist. Since then, my life as a 
participant in the dynamics of color and healing 
has moved dramatically forward. The incident was 
simple, unexpected, unplanned, the results 
dramatic. It began during a therapy session with a 
client, a woman, who was also an art therapist. I 
was listening to her and intuiting that what she 
most needed was to work with the art process. 
With this in mind, I invited her to add random 
lines to drawing paper with colored pastels as she 
continued speaking. 

I heard her words and observed the lines of the 
drawing. Quickly they became sharp and jagged. 
Interrupting, I asked her what was going on. Her 
response was, "I have a splitting headache." In 
that moment, I chanced to take a leap. My client 
was open to follow and I guided her in involve- 
ment of color and healing. From the visual image 
of pain, to its color, to the healing color, chosen 
by the client and slowly applied to the pain area of 
the drawing, to the immediate relief of symp- 




Horses of the Rainbow, Limited 
Serigraph Lillian Rhinehart, 
Paula Englehorn 



18 




HEALING ARTS AND RITUALS 




tomatology, a very brief time had elapsed, less 
than ten minutes. In disbelief and gratitude, the 
client showed her appreciation to that healing part 
of herself by applying "her" color to the drawing. 
It happened so quickly. My client was amazed. I 
was elated! In those few moments, the bridge I had 
been seeking and know existed had been 
discovered. Here was a way to work with color 
and healing in a direct manner that was significant 
in its effect upon the individual. 

I believe in the significance of color on the 
mind/body/spirit of the individual. I had done 
much reading and study on the subject of color 
and had completed enough "significant for me" 
research to verify the point of my beginning in 
this mystery of color and healing. Innately I knew 
that the seed of color was within each individual, 
that each individual could identify his or her per- 
sonal color and healing and color and 
psychological growth could be developed to work 
in a concrete and viable manner in the field of art 
therapy and further, in the development of 
spirituality. My path on this journey of color and 
healing clarified in that moment of discovery with 
my client. With much study and research and ap- 
plication, what I have learned of the art of heal- 
ing, so far, is this: 

1. I am a facilitator of healing; that which 
heals is within each of us. We are vessels 
for that healing. 

2. As vessels for healing, our task is to con- 
tinually clarify to serve a healing purpose. 
Personal psychological awareness is required 
for this work. 

3. My task is to create that space necessary to 
address the healer in each of us and in our 
clients as well. The healing process then 
begins to function. 

4. Personal preparation including meditation 
and listening deeply to one's inner voice is 
continually required in this work. 

5. The client need not be a "believer" but 
must be open to the possibility of being 
helped in the healing experience that will 
be evoked. 

As a woman, my intuitive knowing, my knowledge 
and skill as a therapist and teacher and my open- 
ness of heart are the greatest gifts I can bring to 
this arena of life. They are worthy qualities and 
my continual preparation is to bring them for- 
ward. As has been said before by a great teacher, 
the greatest gift is the open heart, for it is love 
which invites the healing. 

As women we bring together a great archetypal 
heritage of constancy in nurturing, in sustaining 
and in renewing. We carry the seeds of great pa- 
tience which can lead to much healing. In personal 
and individual ways we have the opportunity to 
bring balance and healing to a world that is 



technologically out of balance. The wisdom of our 
intuition and the wisdom of our hearts are 
available to guide us in this endeavor. I have 
moved a great distance from that unexpected, 
unplanned incident in color and healing with my 
client. 

In joining with my friend and colleague Paula 
Englehorn, who comes to the realm of color upon 
her own historic path, we have joined our 
backgrounds of individual preparation and life ex- 
perience to accept through vision and apply what 
we know as art therapists to develop a way of 
working with growth and healing through the 
Rainbow pathways of the Sun Wheel. 

PAULA'S JOURNEY 

Lillian and I started working together shortly after 
she had the healing experience with her client. At 
first I was her student studying Jungian psychology 
combined with art. Eventually, we started a 
graduate training program in art therapy. It was 
an exciting time as we began working with our 
students in what we now call art process therapy. 
Lillian's discovery with her client was our starting 
point from which we worked toward developing 
an effective and healing way of working with peo- 
ple. We integrated Gestalt therapy into the art ex- 
perience: working in the now, exaggerating move- 
ment on the paper, we could see that the obvious 
is overlooked and extremely important. From both 
Jung's work and Perl's work in Gestalt therapy, we 
used a written or spoken dialogue form with the 
art experience. The most important element of art 
process therapy became the belief that within each 
of us is God and the power to heal ourselves 
through color and symbols. In these early days of 
developing art process therapy we experienced the 
aliveness of color and know that the form of 
therapy we were developing could help many peo- 
ple touch their own healing capabilities. 

As Lillian and I led our students into the reality of 
living symbols produced from the hand, we led 
ourselves into the same reality. Through the art 
process I was beginning to rediscover a lost psychic 
ability, and more and more I trusted the art ex- 
perience in combination with a written or spoken 
dialogue. I didn't realize it at the time, but I was 
being led into a vast realm of other realities. Even- 
tually the door to my own visionary capabilities 
was opened through the art process. 

At this time I also began to experience a great deer 
through what I then called the active imagination 
and written dialogue process of C. G. Jung. The 
deer is the intuitive personification for the Huichol 
Indians of Mexico and she became my first guide 
to the greatest feminine healer, our mother the 
Earth. 

In April of 1979, I drew a spontaneous and recurr- 
ing image of a great rock. I knew this rock. I knew 
the shadows that fell upon her sides and I knew I 



19 




HEALING ARTS AND RITUALS 



must find her. In July of that year Lillian and I set 
out to find the rock. I remain grateful to Lillian 
for her complete willingness to enter the reality of 
vision with me. We found the rock in the high 
desert plains of Arizona. I looked up at her and 
tears streamed down my face and I was home. 

The Navajo say that everything we need to know 
we can learn from the land. They send their 
young children out upon the land to listen to the 
mother and to learn by observation. The rock, 
whom the Navajo call the Angel of the Garden, 
has become my teacher. I've listened deeply to the 
Angel and she has taught me about an Ancient 
Rainbow Tribe of people who lived their life 
within the great round and who knew that the 
hues of the Rainbow were the source of healing. 
Today the Navajo think of the Rainbow as God 
upon Earth, and the Ancient Tribe knew that the 
Rainbow was the very breath of the Great Spirit. 

The circle path of life and the reality of the Rain- 
bow are the Angel's greatest teachings. She has 
taught me that everything, the two leggeds, the 
four leggeds, the plants, the animals, everything is 
equal, alive and needed within the great round of 
the universe. Through her teachings has come the 
knowledge of a Rainbow Medicine Wheel known 
as the Sun Wheel. There are four Sun Wheel 
ceremonies which have come with the teachings. 
The ceremonies honor the four seasons of the 
year, and each has a special lesson. 

We move further along the intuitive path and the 
knowledge that much healing comes from this 
source. Our work in art process therapy finds a 
home within the Rainbow hues of the Sun Wheel. 
The collective and personal meanings of the Sun 
Wheel add richness to art experiences. 

The greatest paradox is that our mother the Earth 
is both healer and deeply wounded. We stand in 
need of the feminine as the lost fourth of the 
quarternity, as a source in bringing balance and 
healing to a world that is dangerously 
technologically out of balance. The widsom of our 
intuition and the love in our hearts are available 
to guide us in this work. The Earth is the per- 
sonification of the feminine. She is a great teacher 
and a great healer. She is our sister, our mother, 
our grandmother. As women and as individuals 
we have the unique opportunity to help bring 
balance and healing to a world that is much in 
need. The Rainbow Hues and great Medicine 
Wheels return to the Earth to help focus the 
feminine healing principle of our mother the 
Earth. 

Today, the healing inherent in the Rainbow and 
in the Sun Wheel are the cornerstones of our 
work as professional art therapists. 



Lillian Rhmehart, M.A., M.F.C.C, A.T.R., and Paula Engelhom, 
M.A., A.T.R., combine more than 30 years experience in public 
school education, art, psychology, and the practice of art therapy. 
They integrate concepts of ]ungian psychology, Gestalt therapy, and 
the wisdom of ancient American truths in their healing work with 
color, and through their creation of Rainbow Clan. Rainbow Clan 
offers programs and healing ceremonies based on the healing power 
of color and the sacred circle paths inspired by the Ancient 
American Rainbow Medicine Wheel. They are deeply committed to 
Earth healing rituals and practices. They publish articles and have a 
private practice in Santa Rosa, Calif. 



20 




HEALING ARTS AND RITUALS 



THE INNER WINNER'S 
CIRCLE 

Janet Bray 

How does it happen? How does this music we 
make heal us, help us to love, find the courage to 
suffer, and the steadiness to persevere? 

Corran, a younger woman in our group says "My 
heart opens up when we sing." Helen says "We 
become one through the rnusic, we commune with 
each other." "Love, yes, that's it," says Lucille, 
"love comes through the music." We come 
together, and with this energy that moves through 
us, we are healed. It is a spiritual experience, it is a 
joyousness, we are alive, we are love. 

Harvey is 79 years old, Arthur is 86, Delia is 98 
years old this year. These people, and many more, 
live in a convalescent hospital. The program is 
called "Wellness for Elders," and we meet twice a 
week to share music and ourselves. The result is 
an opportunity for communion, for healing. There 
are about 35 people who regularly attend our 
group. We have named ourselves "The Inner Win- 
ner's Circle," and have chosen the theme song of 
"Side by Side." Our vow to support ourselves and 
each other in our living and dying is the bond 
that holds us together. There are so many stories 
being shared, years of experiences, of loving, living 
and growing. 

Doris was a schoolteacher for 55 years. She is able 
to walk by herself, though her knees are a bit 
shaky. She has a bright mind and shares her in- 
sights with the group as if we were all her students 
as well as her friends. 

Arthur was a professional singer, and though he is 
wheelchair bound, not as strong as he used to be, 
he still has a wonderfully strong voice. He dearly 
loves to sing, and we all love to hear him. 

Harvey was a storekeeper. He is our spiritual 
leader. Whenever an occasion arises we can call on 
him to guide us in a prayer, or to speak his words 
of wisdom. His contribution to our group is impor- 
tant to us all. 

Helen, a younger member of our family, has 
cerebral palsy. She is unable to write with her 
physical hands, but her mind is always writing. 
Her poems are so beautiful that we have put music 
to two of them and share them as "our songs." 
Helen cries a lot, mostly from joy. When she cries, 
we know we have touched home. 

Yoshi was a concert pianist. She has had many 
strokes and is unable to talk or move much of her 
body. Because she is an accomplished musician, 
her very presence uplifts us all. She feels our love 
and respect, smiles a lot and pats her foot to the 
music. 

Harvey remembers a hymn he used to sing. Ar- 
thur talks about the church he and Yoshi used to 
attend and how they sang that hymn. Nana says 




she also remembers it. So Harvey starts to hum it 
and recalls the first line, Delia remembers the se- 
cond line, and we are off and running. We all 
decide we want to complete it today, so the next 
30 minutes are spent slowly reconstructing the 
lyrics, remembering the right tune, putting guitar 
accompaniment to it. And now, at last, we think 
we've got it, and 35 people, most over 80 years on 
this earth begin to gently, softly and lovingly 
sing.... 

OH LORD MY GOD, WHEN I IN AWESOME WONDER 

CONSIDER ALL THE WORKS THY HANDS HAVE 

MADE. 

I SEE THE STARS, I HEAR THE ROLLING THUNDER 

THY POWER THROUGHOUT THE UNIVERSE 

DISPLAYED. 

THEN SINGS MY SOUL, MY SAVIOR GOD TO THEE 
HOW GREAT THOU ART, HOW GREAT THOU ART.... 

This is a moment that none of us will forget. The 
power of this communion heals our hearts. We 
open to the sound, to the words, to each other, to 
the hope and love that exists in each of us and in 
us as a whole. 

Harvey says this moment will be etched in his 
heart as one of his most precious memories and 
asks if we can sing "Memories." We sing it with 
that mixture of sorrow and joy familiar to us all, 
and Helen cries. 

The next day our beloved Yoshi dies of a stroke. 
When \#e gather again to sing our songs, we sing 
them just for her. We honor her passing, and our 
loss. We are all one I remind everyone and myself. 
Yoshi is with us now, as before, in spirit and in 
ouT* music. She taught us that music does not 
belong to any individual. It comes from the 
universe and goes out to the universe. 

I look around the room at the beauty of so many 
wise and lovely beings. I can remember a time 
when all I could see was tht iffering and the 
death in these hospitals. I lo> the eyes of in- 

timate friends, and understand the depth of our 
commitment to each other, and I feel blessed. 



21 




HEALING ARTS AND RITUALS 



No one gets any younger, no one avoids suffering 
and death, but somehow each moment becomes a 
precious jewel. The quality of living rings out in 
the sounds of the voices in the room and for this 
instant there are no differences, no contrasts or 
separations between us, only the sound of one 
voice. ...a voice of love from the Inner Winner's 
Circle. 

(After 1 finished writing this article I took it with me 
to the hospital and I asked my dear friends if they 
wanted to hear it. They all said yes. 

Harvey's grandson and his wife were visiting from far 
away, and his dear lady friend Lorna was also there. 

Everyone was excited and I began to read. After each 
paragraph they all applauded the person mentioned. 
The enthusiasm and emotions began to rise. 

We re-experienced our feelings of love and loss as we 
remembered Yoshi's death, and we all sang together 
"How Great Thou Art" as we reached that part of 
the story. 

M;y voice broke with emotion as we came to the end of 
the reading. Helen cried and said "It's beautiful," and 
the room was full of laughter and tears, Harvey's 
relatives included. The bond between us was 
strengthened again as we shared another precious mo- 
ment in "The Inner Winner's Circle.") 



Through classes called "Wellness for Elders," Janet Bray uses sound 
and music to meet the various needs of the elderly in hospital and 
convalescent home settings. She has a California State Teacher's 
Credential in gerontology, music, and physical education. She has 
been attending seven hospitals per week for the past eight years. Her 
training in voice, music, yoga, hypnosis, and stress reduction, provide 
the background for the development of her unique abilities with, and 
uses of, Tibetan bells, bowls, percussion instruments and guitar, for 
healing Janet's unique healing "presence" invites the observer into a 
calm and uplifting experience in sound and feeling. Whether she is 
rubbing the bowls or playing the bells from Tibet, or strumming 
music on her guitar, time/space seem to change: the sounds of her 
instruments and voice offer an altered state, a healing experience, to 
those listening. Janet has published a book, FREEDOM WITH 
YOGA, (1973 and resides m Sebastobol, Calif. 



22 




HEALING ARTS AND RITUALS 



THE MAGIC OF JANET 
BRAY'S TIBETAN BELLS 

Sounds and the Transpersonal 

Experience 

Betty B. Bowman 

A small still lotus, she sits, waits for us to enter, 
find our own space, settle. Four golden brass bowls 
of varied size and shape lie on purple cloth before 
her. 

The room is bare, no chairs or desks to lean upon. 
Spring-fresh trees bud outside a windowed wall. 
We are quiet, expectant. 

She stirs, a flower floating, rooted, ready to un- 
fold. We listen to soft clear words of her life, her 
losses, her sharing many passages of death. She 
sways forward, lifts and cradles with loving hand 
one shining bowl. Selects a hammer, strikes: 



Crystal 

waves vibrations 

crash echo 



quiver 

fly through window pane, fade 

to 

sky 



She rises, barefoot, a heavier bowl still cradled, 
glides to each of us in turn. A delicate Pan, she 
hovers, brings bell bowl close to my ear. She 
strikes: 

I rock 

in 

my mother's womb 

swathed 

in sea water 

I vibrate 

as she cries sings laughs 

I feel the rushing 

of her body 

as she dances 



Pan returns to glowing bowls and hammers, circles 
the room, again, then once again. Reverent, atten- 
tive, she presents her gifts of ocean murmurs, 
primeval cataclysm, chattering ice, shadow, smoke. 

We remain still, waves rising and falling, one with 
the tide, eyes closed, inward, entrapped: 

Time 

forward backward 
changing dying 
growing whirling 
sliding turning 
ever then 
now 
always 

Or we watch, sharing small secret smiles of delight 
with those no longer strangers. 

Pan sits with us then, returns to words of this cen- 
tury, this world. The spell is not soon broken. She 
speaks of old people ready to die, but not quite 
yet, shares songs that make the passing easier: 

I'm forever blowing bubbles 
Gone are the days when my heart was young and 

gay 

Always 

Songs of love, loss, joy, chords well remembered 
that strike our own. She tells us of her work, of 
her witness to the dying, of face relieved and 
serene. Of her new love, her children, her grand- 
child whom the old adore, treasure. 

It is noon. We rise reluctantly. Magic lives in these 
golden bell bowls and in this woman Pan. 

I have been cleansed, hushed. I wait for the bells 
to sound once more within me. 



Betty Bowman is a writer, who attended the 2nd annual Creative 
Arts as Therapy symposium at Sonoma State University in March 
1985. Participating in Janet Bray's workshop, "Sounds and the 
Transpersonal Experience," she was inspired to write this tribute to 
Janet Bray. Betty lives in Nevada City, Calif. 



^TMWWwwwwtfwwvWi ,SSSSSBSS5SBESSSBBSBEBl!^ JWwwwwMMWftwwyi 



23 



HEALING ARTS AND RITUALS 





Two women from t/ie Wallflower Order Dance Collective at a discussion after rehearsal. Managua, Nicaragua. Margaret Randall. 



DANCE THERAPY AS 
A HEALING ART 

Judith Beers Stanton, A.D.T.R. 
Academy of Dance Therapists 
Registered 

"It's a vicious circle," she says, sitting slumped 
against the wall. Karen is viewing a drawing she 
created, a spiral divided into sections that have the 
words "fat," "unloved," "no family," "no friends," 
"lonely" written in them. Enclosed in the center 
"Home Free" is written, the only positive feature 
reflected in the picture. Her soft voice sounds 
heavy and sad. Her arms are resting on her bend- 
ed knees, her hands hanging limply from the wrist. 
Everything about her reflects her depression, as 
though a force in the earth is pulling her further 
and further into a hole from which she cannot 
escape. 

Karen is in a dance therapy session for emotionally 
disturbed adults in Napa, California. We have just 
come from an art therapy session in which we 
drew a "map" of our lives. Karen, who has struggl- 
ed with depression and suicidal thoughts, found 



the process excruciatingly painful and was feeling 
hopeless and helpless. Although she did not want 
to attend the dance therapy group, I told her that 
she had no choice. Reluctantly, she joined us. I 
now ask her to move some of the different parts of 
the "map" that she drew. Slowly she hauls herself 
to her feet. Hands and arms hanging limply, 
shoulders slouched over, chest caved in, she begins 
walking in a circle. Finally turning around in 
place, she pauses. 

"I've got to stop that," she states and reverses her 
direction. She walks to the back of the room and 
breathes a heavy sigh. Returning to the center of 
the room she hunkers down and pretends to pet 
her dog, a source of joy and comfort to her. This 
is her "sanctuary space," the place in her life 
where she is "Home Free". 

"What else helps you?" I ask. 

"Coming to Pathways (the day treatment 
program), greeting my friends here," she says, 
walking up to each person and shaking their 
hands. As she talks her voice becomes more 
animated, and she laughs. She then returns to the 
wall and slumps into her former position. 



24 




HEALING ARTS AND RITUALS 




Although she acknowledges being helped, she still 
feels caught in a vicious circle and unable to break 
its spell. 

As the group leader, I also have made a drawing 
and will show my dance. Karen offers to hold up 
my score. In my dance I am slogging though 
muck, barely able to lift my feet; I am trying to 
cross a storm-tossed river; I am climbing a moun- 
tain. All are symbolic of various private struggles. I 
throw myself into the dance: flinging myself about 
the room, falling down, hauling myself back to my 
feet, only to fall again. Karen, increasingly involv- 
ed in my dance, exclaims when I fall, anticipates 
my next move, comments on the terrain I am in 
or names the one I will enter. When I complete 
the dance I am exhausted. As I come to join the 
rest of the group, she puts my picture down and 
embraces me firmly yet sensitively. 

"You've been through a lot, Judith," she says, pat- 
ting my back. "You're allright!" From that mo- 
ment her affect is completely changed: her voice is 
animated, her movements more energetic and live- 
ly. Identifying with my problems and vicariously 
experiencing the freedom and energy I could ex- 
press, she is able to free herself, for the moment, 
from her terrible spell. 

This incident describes one moment in a specific 
dance therapy session. Dance therapy has many 
moments and many forms, but its source is univer- 
sal. Humans are moving creatures. Our physical 
interactions with the world around us color our 
perceptions and understandings. We see, hear, 
smell, taste, touch. And, we move. Through move- 
ment we learn about our world, organize thoughts, 
and develop concepts. Developmental psychologist 
Jean Piaget proposes a transformation of move- 
ment patterns into thought patterns. Through 
concrete experiences the child is able to conceive 
of objects, space, time, causality, and logical rela- 
tionships. The visual, auditory, tactile, and 
kinesthetic senses are integrated and become in- 
terdependent. The mind does not exist separate 
and independent from the body; the mind 
perceives through the body; the body understands 
through the mind. Both are equally important and 
both are necessary. 

Our society, however, has diminished the impor- 
tance of the bodily experience. Authentic feeling 
and emotion struggle for expression. Suppressed 
emotion can be manifested in the body in a clen- 
ched jaw, tight shoulders, rigid back, concave 
chest, shallow breathing. Emotion and motion are 
linked. Webster's Dictionary defines emotion as a 
"psychic and physical reaction subjectively ex- 
perienced as strong feeling and physiologically in- 
volving changes that prepare the body for im- 
mediate vigorous action." Our everyday language 
reflects this connection. We "shoulder our 
burdens," "keep a stiff upper lip," "walk with our 
heads in the clouds," or our "chins to the 
ground." We "look before we leap," "jump for 



joy," "follow the straight and narrow," "run 
around in circles." There are thousands of 
idiomatic expressions involving almost every part 
of the body that relate emotion to the body and 
feelings to action. But the expression of emotion is 
tempered by social and cultural expectations as 
well as by personal experiences. Certain gestures, 
such as a bow or a handshake, may mean one 
thing in Japan, quite another in France. An in- 
dividual's movement- repertoire is thus comprised 
of a cultural background, social milieu, personal 
experience, and idiosyncratic behavior. Dance 
therapy provides a modality through which in- 
dividuals can explore the multitude of subtle and 
complex interactions that constitute non-verbal 
communication. 

To understand these interactions, we must ex- 
perience our bodies in motion: how to move our 
body parts, how to circle, bend, stretch, skip, 
gallop. Sensing what it feels like to do these ac- 
tivities, we learn to notice differences when our 
moods change; and finally we are able to 
transform these experiences and the emotional 
responses into an aesthetic form which gives mean- 
ing to the feelings. Allowing the feelings to emerge 
through the movement and relating those ex- 
periences to our cultural , social, and personal 
world help us to understand more fully our inner 
dynamics. The aesthetic component involves 
developing the skill to transform inchoate feelings 
into structured meaning. We can choreograph 
dances utilizing the metaphors and symbolism in- 
herent in movement that express the emotional 
content of a kinesthetic experience. 

In primitive societies dance was an integral part of 
the culture. Ritual dances were performed to 
celebrate the planting of the seeds, to ensure fertili- 
ty, to reap the harvest, and to exorcise demons in 
possessed person. Dance manifested the deepest 
secrets of religious rites and celebrated life's transi- 
tions — puberty, marriage, birth, death. In its 
religious context, dance was officiated by the 
shaman, or the medicine man or woman. Trained 
in the symbolism of the religion and the culture, 
these people were the facilitators of the divine ex- 
perience. Shaun McNiff states in his book The Arts 
and Psychotherapy: 

The shaman serves as the intermediary 
between people and "forces" that must be 
engaged in order to influence the course of 
community life. Shamanism is a direct and 
personal relationship with the supernatural 
dynamic of life. 

The shaman generally strives to create a 
psychologically charged group environment. 
As the emissary of the group, the shaman 
is propelled into a condition of altered con- 
sciousness that makes dialogue with the 
'the spirits' possible. The group projects 
power to the shaman, which can be 
measured in relation to the intensity of 



25 




HEALING ARTS AND RITUALS 




their collective spontaneity and enthusiasm. 
Their chanting, movement, and musical ac- 
companiment takes on hypnotic dimensions 
as they transmit energy to the protagonist. 
This emotionally charged atmosphere of the 
shamanic enactment in turn engages all 
participants and strengthens their resolve to 
achieve transcendence and the neutraliza- 
tion of emotional conflict.* 

Essentially the dance therapist endeavors to enact 
a similar involvement without actually going into 
trance. Sensitive to the group's energies, the dance 
therapist attempts to allow the emotions to exist 
and to transform them into an aesthetic expression 
that can be manifested safely. However, without 
the support and validation of society, the therapist 
is working in a spiritual vacuum. Although healing 
does take place, its effect is less substantial than it 
might be. Profound change is possible if we can 
both believe in and capture the inner essence. In 
order to do that we must allow the movement to 
emerge from a deeper source than we usually 
acknowledge. We must overcome personal and 
cultural resistance to contact this inner source. 

Several years ago at a dance therapy conference, a 
group of experimental musicians improvised and 
interacted with us as we danced. Having attended 
sessions all day, some of which excited me and 
some of which distressed me, and having in- 
teracted intensely with people, I felt exhausted, ir- 
ritable, and fragmented. I knew I would feel better 
if 1 danced. Briefly I did so desultorily but felt self- 
conscious, stiff, and without rhythm. Finally I 
decided to listen to my body and stop. Knowing 
that a relaxation exercise would refresh me, I lay 
on my back in a dark inconspicuous corner. 
Breathing deeply I consciously relaxed every part 
of my body. Then I lay quietly waiting for the "in- 
ner" movement to emerge rather than performing 
the "outer" movement just to do something. My 
awareness sank to a deeper level. Slowly my arms 
and hands began exploring the space around my 
supine body. As my legs and feet began to move, I 
gradually stood. Discrete, isolated movements ex- 
panded into a slow, sustained dance that curved 
inward, reached out and encircled my space. The 
dance felt wonderfully luxurious but it was not my 
usual dance, which is quick, strong and direct. My 
dance finished, I realized a rush of focused energy. 
Again joining the group, I danced for several 
hours feeling exhilarated and elated, cleansed of all 
negative feelings and full of joy and life. Working 
through my resistance had allowed the healing 
process to do its work. That movement is a power- 
ful modality for healing I do not doubt. To create 
a sacred space for that profound healing to occur 
is my ultimate challenge. 

*McNiff, Shaun. The Arts and Psychotherapy. Spr- 
ingfield, IL: Charles C. Thomas, Publisher, 1981. 
p.3. 



As a dance therapist, Judith Stanton, M.A., A.D.T.R., has worked 
with emotionally disturbed adults at Napa County Mental Health 
and with adults and children at Napa State Hospital. Currently she 
is working with Alzheimer's Disease victims and their families 
through Napa County Human Services. She is a certified massage 
therapist and incorporates the power of healing touch in her work. 
Judith resides in Napa, Calif. 



26 




HEALING ARTS AND RITUALS 




WHO IS A DANCE 
THERAPIST? 

Frieda F. Sherman 

Who is a dance therapist? What are the ingre- 
dients of her personality? In what ways does she 
perceive herself and her physical and spiritual 
world? What occurred, either in external cir- 
cumstances or philosophical outlook, that led her 
to use movement as therapy? 

Most fundamentally, the dance therapist is some- 
one who relies on body movements for authentic 
knowledge. One woman I interviewed talked about 
her childhood perception of her mother — the dif- 
ference between what her mother said and what 
she knew to be true from her mother's 
movements. Another watched people's feet and 
hands, seeing if the movements they made match- 
ed their facial expressions and the words they 
spoke. Another heard the words that said that she 
was not to dance because of the family's religious 
beliefs, but as she watched her parents, she felt 
that they danced through life. 

These early childhood experiences reinforced over 
and over the belief that what was true could be 
seen not in the face's polite mask, could be heard 
not in the usual words, but could be intuited by 
the feelings that were passed along the watcher's 
nerves, muscles and tendons. There were times 
when she tried on movements, much as one tries 
on Mommy's dress. How would it feel to be inside 
the other's skin? And then quickly out again, 
because her own body, ultra-sensitive and em- 
pathic, easily slipped into not only the skin but 
the emotion of another. 

That is why it is essential for her to control her 
own body — what I've called body autonomy. It is 
the difference between empathy, "the capacity for 
participating in the feelings or ideas of another," 
and the loss of boundaries and control. 

For those who had early— pre-kindergarten— 
dance training, as well as for those who took their 
first professional dance class when they were in 
their thirties, the discipline and form, the actual 
physical moving was joyful. The sense of "not do- 
ing it right," of "not being good enough," of "not 
owning one's own body" was painful. Some said 
they were grateful for the discipline, the knowledge 
that they could do more than they at first thought 
they could, of working past a known point of en- 
durance, of knowing that they had a capacity 
greater than their everyday existence. One of the 
characteristics common to many dance therapists 
is their willingness to take risks, and I believe 
dance training is partly responsible for their will- 
ingness to experiment and for their flexibility in 
life as well as body. 

The struggle then began between the teacher's in- 
structions and the student's desire to move in her 
own way. One woman described it as at first try- 



ing to force herself into the movement mold of the 
instructor's style until she felt as if she was losing 
her own identity. 

Identity is synonymous with the body's 
movements — not anyone's movements, not 
anyone's dance — only one's own. Dance 
therapists are dancers whose movements are as 
unique as their speech patterns. The innate desire 
to self-govern one's physical being is in turn of- 
fered to patients and clients. Therefore, dance 
therapists know that they need to be aware of 
their idiosyncratic movements and refrain from 
performance or modeling in the therapeutic set- 
ting. In addition, dance is the way to express feel- 
ings. One dance therapist told me that she was 
able to express emotions unacceptable to her fami- 
ly only when she danced, "Through dance, I 
found a way to turn away from the external world 
into the true, inner world of my feelings." 

The need for body autonomy carries over into 
relationships with parents and teachers, husbands, 
lovers, friends. 

Power is an inherent quality in body autonomy. 
To be strong enough to be who one wants to be, 
and to actualize the desired self, require power. In 
the comings and goings of their lives, the will- 
ingness to exert authority also comes and goes. Is a 
display of forceful energy acceptable to a woman? 
Many dance therapists have been told that they 
are "too sensitive for their own good." They are 
sensitive and intuitive. There's the bind. If one is 
easily affected by other people's reactions, especial- 
ly people with whom one has a special relation- 
ship, can there be a concomitant willingness to be 
powerful? Will it be understood that the need 
arises out of oneself? Can one be at the same time 
powerful and in a mutually dependent relation- 
ship? When one leans, is it to hold up or to be 
held? 

There is a continual interplay between subordina- 
tion and independence. Two of the dance 
therapists I interviewed were divorced after they 
attempted to change a marital relationship to in- 
clude more of a sense of their own power and en- 
suing autonomy. It is difficult to find a mutually 
acceptable balance, and a dance therapist, by 
definition, is in the business of balancing parts of 
her life. 

Creativity is another essential element and equally 
difficult to maintain. One dance therapist said that 
once she became an administrator, her relationship 
to her patients changed. She could no longer be 
both the dance therapist and the person in charge. 
I'm sure many of you feel that the pendulum is 
continually and critically swinging between routine 
work and innovation, between form-filling and ger- 
minating new ideas, between dancing and dance 
therapy and therapy. 

Another aspect of this creative difficulty is the 
time spent caretaking — the cooking, cleaning, 



27 




HEALING ARTS AND RITUALS 




child-caring roles. The demands to be more than a 
professional person are often willingly accepted; 
the demand to be less, which sometimes happens, 
is not so willingly accepted. 

What characteristics should a woman have who is 
involved in this juggling act? Miriam Puder, for 
her dissertation, "Dance Therapy for the Emo- 
tionally Disturbed and/or Neurologically Impaired 
Child," spoke to or corresponded with approx- 
imately fourteen dance therapists. I pulled from 
the text a list of qualities that these women believ- 
ed to he important characteristics of dance 
therapists: 

1. Thev have to understand, use and be sure 
of their dance background. 

2. They must have self-knowledge through 
personal therapy. 

3. Re sensitive, patient, joyful, and love peo- 
pie. 

4. Be imaginative, open, and have a good 
voice quality. 

(Marian Chace talks about that, too.) 

5. Be flexible and open— have the ability to 
change. 

6. Be willing to take chances, to experiment, 
to risk. 

7. Have sincerity, spontaneity and patience. 

8. Be intuitive. 

9. Be aware of one's own movement reper- 
toire. 

10. Have empathy and objectivity. 

1 1. Have commitment and the ability to listen. 

12. Be open-minded and receptive. 

13. Have tolerance, flexibility and acceptance. 

14. Give up their ego. 

A feminist lawyer who read this list asked, "Are 
dance therapists expected to be human?" We cer- 
tainly do demand a lot of ourselves and each 
other. 

Claire Schmais and Elissa White wrote a synopsis 
of the Hunter College Dance Therapy Masters 
Program, when it was two years old. The result of 
the CPI (California Psychological Inventory) Pro- 
files were that the first group of students were in- 
sightful, self-confident, idealistic and rebellious. 
The second group were spontaneous, informed, 
outgoing and expressive, immature and self- 
centered. 

Who is a dance therapist? Out of my research, I'd 
say she is a dancer who uses movement as rela- 
tionship, power, myth, individuality, discovery, 
commitment, symbolic communication, the answer 
to life's questions, and the connection between the 
mind and the body. Dance expresses the feelings 
inside of herself and towards others. She is able to 



see body movement in these ways because it is a 
reflection of the characteristics of her personality 
and philosophy, and often of her own strong 
spiritual beliefs. 

She always knew that there had to be a way to 
combine her love of moving with her desire to 
help people. The overall, pervasive belief in the 
validity of her own experience with movement was 
the force behind her emergence as a dance 
therapist. Some dance therapists who began as 
teachers realized that what they were doing was no 
longer teaching dance. Classes had evolved into 
something else. They weren't sure it was 
therapy— some being very loath to name it 
therapy — but it certainly wasn't the modern dance 
class of old. Some took their dance training and 
consciously constructed a form of communication 
called therapy. Others studied psychology in col- 
lege and because they had also danced, sometimes 
professionally, evolved a way of using dance with 
patients. Some had been working as dance 
therapists for years before they knew there were 
other people doing what they were doing. They 
described at one and the same time a sense of 
comradeship and of disappointment at not being 
the first or only one to be using dance in this way. 
Some heard about, read about dance therapy, and 
tracked down a person to train with and/or a 
school to attend. This will increasingly become the 
path of the future dance therapist. 

Will the fact that dance therapy is an established 
profession change who becomes a dance therapist? 
Schools will undoubtedly change the profession. 
However, there will always be people who have 
not heard of dance therapy and who will discover 
it anew, unaware that they are not the first. Con- 
tinually reinventing the wheel isn't practical or ef- 
ficient; however, it does bring out those who are 
willing to experiment, to be different, to rebel. It 
will be a while before we discover all of the 
possibilities inherent in dance therapy. And if the 
field continues to attract intuitive, rebellious, spon- 
taneous, patient, empathic, flexible, joyful people, 
then we haven't seen anything yet. 



Frieda F. Sherman is a founding member and present president of 
"The Workshop Unlimited, Inc.," a non-profit corporation 
dedicated to education in creativity. She has been involved in dance 
therapy for twenty years, formerly in two psychiatric units of private 
hospitals and a halfway house and currently in private practice in 
Palo Alto, California. 



28 




HEALING ARTS AND RITUALS 





SHAMANISM: A SPIRITUAL 
DISCIPLINE FOR 
PERSONAL AND 
COMMUNITY 
ENPOWERMENT. 

Lyn Taylor 

Shamanism is a non-Western religious practice bas- 
ed upon the belief that the spirit world is a parallel 
reality which influences and intercedes in human 
affairs via special people initiated as Shamans. A 
Shaman is a man or woman who walks between 
ordinary and non-ordinary reality with a specific 
mission to acquire knowledge and power to help 
others in the community. To do this, the Shaman 
takes journeys into non-ordinary reality. This is 
usually facilitated by the use of sonic drumming, 
chants or drugs. On these journeys, she connects 
with her personal power support system: allies, 
power animals, power spots, items for a medicine 
bundle, and songs and dances. Traditionally, most 
Shamans have been men. Women Shamans have 
been as powerful even though they were fewer in 
number and began to serve after the age of child- 
bearing. 

I am a psychotherapist and a practicing shaman in 
Berkeley, California. I trained with Michael 
Harner, Ph.D., who is a Shaman and a professor 
of anthropology in New York. During the past five 
years, I have worked with individual clients, con- 
ducted group workshops and founded the Em- 
powering Circle. In my practice, I use shamanic 
techniques to help clients move constructively 
through stressful life transitions. They are able to 
gain a clear vision of the next phase of their 
lifepath and increased strength and vitality to 
move forward. 

In the empowering circle, six Shamans worked 
together to facilitate personal empowerment with 
clients. Presenting issues included personal creativi- 
ty, spiritual purpose, relationships and physical 



disease. The circle was a unique opportunity to ex- 
perience how information from the spirits could 
channel spontaneously through several healers and 
result in a holistic diagnosis and treatment. 

Since shamanism inherently arises out of one's 
own culture, the current challenge is to develop 
modern, urban 20th century shamanism. This is 
no longer only the task of special initiates. Large 
numbers of people are being trained in shamanic 
techniques and finding applications in their daily 
lives. Examples of modern-day Shamans are 
Michael Harner, Lynn Andrews, Carlos 
Castaneda, Brooke Medicine Eagle and O Shin- 
nah. 

The 1980s are a time of rapid change and transfor- 
mation. New visions, myths and rituals are 
necessary to adapt to the transition. Individuals 
and groups must develop ways to gain personal 
power and act upon a strong sense of commitment 
to make new visions reality. Books such as the 
Castaneda series, Medicine Woman and Clan of the 
Cave Bear are re-awakening an interest in 
shamanism and providing us with a link to an- 
cient lost traditions. This is especially necessary in 
Europe and the United States where these tradi- 
tions have been actively suppressed. It is now time 
to reclaim them so they can serve as a foundation 
for a new shamanism. 

Shamanism is grounded to the Earth and teaches 
us how to reconnect with life cycles and live in 
harmony within ourselves, with others and with 
the Earth. It involves the body, as well as the 
mind and spirit, so that spiritual wisdom is fully 
integrated and acted upon. Personal empowerment 
is gained so individuals can better take their places 
in the ordinary life of the community. When that 
person makes a commitment to a vision, she 
receives support from other members of the 
"tribe." When the vision is fulfilled, it will benefit 
the community as a whole. 

My personal and professional path is to practice 
the tradition of priest woman. There is a lot writ- 
ten about medicine women and warrior women, 
but less about priest women. She is the female 
counterpart of Creb in Clan of the Cave Bear. She 
is a woman of equal status to the chief, yet she 
serves a different function in the tribe. He is in 
charge of maintaining order and providing for the 
physical survival of the tribe. She serves as a 
caretaker of the sacred traditions and preserves the 
spiritual life of the community by keeping alive the 
old visions, stories, songs, dances, and rituals. She 
catalyzes and encourages the creation of new vi- 
sions and traditions. She keeps the group in 
spiritual harmony with each other and with the 
spirits of the Earth. 

It is my challenge to serve in this way in modern 
20th century society. This manifests in my work 
primarily in four ways. One way is to assist people 
to access, and sometimes rebuild, a personal power 



29 




HEALING ARTS AND RITUALS 




spot in non-ordinary reality. In today's stressful 
world, we all need a place to feel safe, regenerate, 
gain knowledge and create, especially during a life 
transition. A personal power spot serves this pur- 
pose. One client was dis-spirited and lacked 
energy. By using a sonic drumming tape, he made 
a journey and found his power spot. He discovered 
that it had been attacked and desecrated. As a 
child, he had fled Cuba when Castro came to 
power. Through a series of journeys, he rebuilt a 
sacred structure on the spot and gained a renewed 
sense of strength, vitality and commitment to use 
the ancient wisdom of his culture. 

Another client has used the journey method to 
connect with her heritage and source of creativity. 
She now composes and sings songs to bring an- 
cient information from the muse into the world in 
a modern translated form. In groups, the spirit 
dance is a way to channel old and new songs and 
dances. 

Shamanism can provide a structure to create 
modern rituals for rites of passage such as concep- 
tion/birth, marriage, mid-life and death. Many old 
traditions in our culture need to be updated, 
enlivened and personalized. New rituals need to be 
discovered. Conjoint journeys with couples have 
helped them to strengthen their marriage through 
commitment to a joint vision. Journeys to the land 
of the dead have supported other clients through 
the grieving process. 




A vision quest can be undertaken by an in- 
dividual, partnership, or group to gain a new 
perspective, clean sense of purpose and commit- 
ment to action. It is usually done at the beginning 
of a new cycle or during a time of transition. 
Sometimes the quest literally requires travel to 
another part of the world. Several clients have 
travelled to Peru, Europe, Thailand and Mexico. 
Civic, political and corporate visionary leaders are 
beginning to acknowledge the need for such quests 
in order to be more attuned to a larger planetary 
purpose. A new field of study called organizational 
transformation is developing ways to teach 
managers how to facilitate transformation within 
their organizations. 



Two years ago, I undertook a personal vision quest 
to Arizona and Switzerland. Atop an alpine peak, 
I received a new vision and walked down the 
mountain with a strong commitment to serve as a 
priest woman in modern-day America. This has 
been a difficult personal and professional 
challenge. Since then, I have continued to use 
shamanic methods to connect with old and new 
knowledge, to build a support sytem of allies, and 
to gain strength and courage to act upon my com- 
mitment in the real world. My central purpose is 
to keep alive the sacred cultural traditions and to 
create new visions. It is also to promote attune- 
ment and harmony within individuals, between 
couples, in small groups, in organizations, and 
among people from different cultures. I serve as a 
catalyst and model to others. I inspire and en- 
courage them to be clear about their vision, walk 
along their unique lifepath, and make their con- 
tribution to the world. 



Lyn Taylor is on the forefront of the integration of traditional and 
contemporary psychological practices. She is an exemplar of the 
movements within transpersonal psychology to reestablish and reaf- 
firm human values, potentials, and experiences within the realm of 
the universal. Using drama, sound, imagery, Lyn draws from cross- 
cultural transpersonal human experiences. She emphasizes the 
shamanic journey as a healing process, and healing woman as keeper 
and teacher of community /cultural values. Lyn Taylor has a 
L.C.S.W. and practices in Berkeley, Calif. 



30 




HEALING ARTS AND RITUALS 




CRYSTAL EARTH HEALING 

Rowena Pattee, M.F.A., Ph.D. 

"Crystal Earth Healing" is a method that "tunes 
in" to the fields of subtle energy from the crystal 
earth grid. It came as an inspiration in my con- 
sciousness when conducting "Shamanic Art and 
Ritual Healing" workshops, while sending healing 
energy to people and in mv meditations. This is an 
on-going process. 

The crystal earth grid is that matrix of crystals 
naturally growing in the earth and its changing 
patterns as more and more people "tune in' to 
ways of planting crystals in the earth. "Subtle 
energy" can be directly experienced by a fine tun- 
ing of consciousness and is what the Chinese 
Taoists call Ch'i, the Sufis Baraka, the Hindus 
Prana. 

In the way that I work, there are four factors 
which enter into "crystal earth healing": 1. direct 
clairvoyant vision of people's energy fields, 
amplified by the use of crystals, 2. use of shamanic 
drumming and awareness of specific orientations 
on the drum where subtle energy fields of gems, 
their colors and qualities are cognizable, 3. sen- 
sitivity to the layers of the crystal grid structures of 
the earth, 4. the alignment of each of these by a 
fine tuning of consciousness, which is what I call 
the "intelligence of the heart." 

As of yet I do not have extensive experience of 
this method of healing, but am attentive to the in- 
creasing signs of its operation. Such signs appear 
in intentional shamanic healing (circles or in- 
dividually) or spontaneously, without intention. 

In shamanic healing circles people report that their 
ability to open fearlessly to experiences previously 
feared is increased. This may appear as super sensi- 
ble visions, moving sensations in specific afflicted 
areas of the body, sudden insights about "pro- 
blems," hearing of voices or inner directives, spon- 
taneous crying and/or laughing, rhythmic swaying 
movements of the body, and rhythmic sounds 
which become chants. In my interpretation, these 
are all effects of a released flow of previously 
blocked subtle energy. After the release of energy a 
person needs to integrate their new vantage and 
feeling into ordinary daily life. In shamanic work 
this is done through relationships to people, 
nature and spirit. 

CASE OF CIRCLES: 

In shamanic all day circles I ask whoever wishes to 
sit, individually, in the center of twelve crystals. 
The others sitting in the circle are asked to report 
anything they see, hear or intuit around the per- 
son in the center. In these cases, there is 85 per- 
cent correspondence of reports. Each person's 
energy field is experienced as different, in color 
and form and people are often astonished to find 
they can "see" in this way. 



In one of our circles a person came in great 
distress and would not speak to anyone. Never- 
theless she came. She was losing her job, was out 
of money and people she loved were no longer 
speaking to her. The only thing she said at first 
was that she was at a "tilt." In the shamanic circle 
she moved into the center. People around her in 
the circle sang songs and sent her loving energy. 
At one point everyone began swaying their bodies 
and as she swayed hers, floods of tears and in- 
sights about her life came. This was not a "cure" 
for her problems, but an experience which could 
lead to it if she worked on it. 

In one shamanic all day circle I drummed for three 
"journeys" throughout the day. The rest of the 
time was spent in movement and voice exercise. 
Before the last "journey" almost everyone was 
resistant to another "journey." Resistance I find 
manifests in two ways: 1. sleepiness and torpor or 
2. distraction, including wandering thoughts. Both 
types were manifesting with this group. I find that 
resistance manifests just when one approaches a 
"break-through" in the healing process. This is a 
very crucial time to proceed despite complaints. In 
the third "journey" 75 percent of the group ex- 
perienced renewed energy and profound insight 
about their lives. The other 25 percent experienced 
unusual coughing, quickening sensations in the 
body, tears. These I interpret as signs of emerging 
"blockage" of subtle energy. 

While teaching a twelve week shamanic class a 
similar thing occurred. In this case there was a 
much longer build up however as we had eight 
weeks of two-hour sessions previous to the all day 
session. There was so much resistance to this day 
that a few did not even come, hut for those who 
did, the day moved into a breakthrough of ex- 
periences previously feared. There were also several 
cases of common visions during certain "journeys." 

CASES OF INDIVIDUALS: 

Sometimes people come with a specific pain. In 
one case it was a chronic pain in the neck and 
continuous headaches. When I first saw this per- 
son I said "The universe needs you ro sing your 
song and not to pretend to be someone else." She 
brightened and said she was inwardly impelled to 
sing but since she couldn't make a living at it, did 
not. I suggested that denying the truth of herself 
causes her the pain. 

When I drummed for her I suggested that she be 
thankful for the pain, for it indicates a strong life- 
force. My suggestion was that if she would whole- 
heartedly receive her pain and regard it as light, it 
would be a great blessing. Visualizing the pain as 
light she started at the head and neck and moved 
it down, experiencing light pervading all parts of 
her body and down through her feet. After this 
session for a considerable time she could not 
speak. Then she reported that the pain was gone 
and she felt energy all over her body. 



31 



HEALING ARTS AND RITUALS 




Somen iTiL-s healing is effected hy sending energy at 
a distance. The clearest case for me arose simply 
out of love for someone who was suffering. It was 
not consciously an effort at healing. This woman 
had arthritis in hoth knees and was suffering so 
severely that she contemplated an operation and 
constantly used cortisone. She lived a thousand 
miles away from me, hut one day, feeling her pain, 
I had a visionary experience of seeing into her 
body. As a result, because I felt strongly about it, I 
wrote to her to take up some regular exercise like 
swimming, to change her diet and to change her 
attitudes about certain emotional situations. She 
did what 1 suggested and within a few months had 
lost thirty pounds (she was overweight), had no 
more pain in her knees at all, needed no drugs 
and, according to her optometrist, her eyesight 
was vastly improved. This was an unexpected 
bonus! 

Another case was a student who had a sore throat 
lor six months. In a ten minute session I had him 
lie down using a clear quartz crystal near his 
throat, asked him to visualize blue color with each 
in-hreath and to out-hreathe light. The sore throat 
was gone and he tells me it never chronically 
returned. 

One case was a woman with a migraine headache. 
There was a place in her spine in the cervical 
vertebrae that I could see was blocked. With her 
back to me I simply placed one hand on the base 
i^( her spine and the other on the cervical 
vertebrae and we began rhythmically swaying and 
humming wonderful sounds together. After about 
twenty minutes her migraine was gone. 

SPONTANEOUS REPORTS: 

Sometimes people who work with me or with 
whom a bond of trust is established, report unex- 
pected visions and ecstatic energy at specific times. 
When they tell me the time I realize that it is 
almost always exactly at times when I have left my 
concentrated practices and gone for a walk or 
work in the garden. I also notice that hawks circle 
overhead at such times: whereas small birds, like 
hummingbirds, hover in front of my window when 
subtle energy is being gathered (even though there 
are no flowers around!) 

My interpretation is that the in-gathering of subtle 
energy is the opposite phase from its release. 
Meditation, even writing and drawing gathers 
energy. Walks and more outward directed activities 
release energy. When I am in the out-breath phase 
people connected with me are seemingly affected. 
They receive when 1 release. There is i\o energy 
drain in this at all. I find that my own health 
depends upon the balance of the in-gathering and 
out-breathing of subtle energy. 

Only in the past couple of years have 1 become 
aware that this is shamanic work. I have been in- 
terested in shamanism since the sixties, but did 



not feel directly and clearly "called" until the fall 
of 1984. I have had no desire to become a healer 
and it is my view that it is by a clear openness to 
truth that one is healed. By facilitating en- 
vironments and situations whereby openness to 
truth is increased, the kind of healing that results 
is an integral part of a way of life. 

Through work with crystals and gems I have 
become aware of the crystal grid in the earth and 
how specific visual, rhythmic and auditory pat- 
terns (art, dance, music, poetry) induce specific 
states of consciousness. Shamans are the 
predecessors to all the arts for the arts spring from 
deep visionary inspiration. 

The use of gems in healing is an ancient one but 
the power of the subtle energy fields emanating 
from gems came to me spontaneously while drum- 
ming. I simply "tune in" and receive subtle energy 
and then I know where and how hard to strike 
the drum and can see the colors and forms of their 
energy fields. It comes through consciousness. The 
crystal earth grid and people's consciousness are 
directly connected through the use of sound, color, 
and gems by a fine tuning process. 

1 use both physical and subtle gems, sounds, colors 
in "crystal earth healing." I make no claims to be- 
ing a healer, but am simply following my visions. 
My background is in art and film work as well as 
cross-cultural myths, symbols and religions. I feel 
that the healing of people and the healing of the 
earth are occurring simultaneously. Let us be more 
aware of it and enjoy the process. Let us know 
that the "Great Spirit" is doing it. 



Roitena Pattee, M.F.A., Ph.D. is a remarkable model for contem- 
porary healing uomen. A prolific artist, she has exhibited paintings, 
drawings, prints on the West Coast and in Britain, and has taught 
at several universities. In 1976-77 she designed and built with her 
own hands the Cave-oj '-Dawning, in Santa Barbara, from the ruins 
<>/ the Avery Brundage Estate. There she completed nine major 
mosaic murals, one of them more than 90 feet long. Rowena has 
written three books, published numerous articles, and created several 
outstanding 16mm color films, e.g. "Tree of Life," "Song to Thee: 
Divine Androgyne," and "Passages." Rouena currently teaches 
through the California School for Integral Studies, San Francisco, 
where she is the first person to hold the chair of the Rudolph Schaef- 
fer Chair of Art and Creativity Studies. Rouenti directs Golden 
Point Productions in Point Reyes Station, Calif. 



32 




HEALING ARTS AND RITUALS 




HEALER WITH SOUND, 

BREATH 

AND QUARTZ CRYSTALS 

Uma Sita Silbey 

Everything is in its essence vibration, whether we 
speak of physical bodies or other objects, thought, 
sound, emotion, or the environment around us. 
Not only is everything at its core vibration, but 
everything vibrates with its own particular quality. 
It is possible to both develop a sense of and a 
physical feeling of this vibration. When you can 
sense vibration and develop a knowledge of it, you 
can manipulate it to make changes physically. This 
is essentially what I do. I use quartz crystals and 
other stones, breath, sound, visualization, yoga 
and other techniques to change the essential vibra- 
tion of bodies, thoughts, emotions and the en- 
vironment for different types of healing, energizing, 
re-balancing and harmonizing. Rather than being 
at the mercy of wildly scattered emotions, mental 
tension and confusion, low or fluctuating body 
energy, the people I work with become more calm 
and relaxed, even while in the midst of a busy life. 
They learn to hear and rely on the intuitive, inner 
voice of wisdom within, irrespective of or in addi- 
tion to outside influences or even their own mind 
and emotions. This often results in physically heal- 
ing their body as well as the creation of an inner 
peace and happiness that does not have to rely on 
the particular circumstances of their life. Not only 
do I do this healing work with people, but I teach 
them to do it for themselves and for others. 

This work is quite simply done by altering certain 
vibrational states within the body. When these 
vibrational patterns are changed either permanent- 
ly or temporarily, certain centers or lines of subtle 
energy that flow through the body are unblocked 
or rerouted so that they can do their work proper- 
ly. This is felt as having more life-force or energy 
and less tension, aches and pains and other symp- 
toms. Very basically, the lines of energy to which I 
refer are, among others, the kundalini energy that 
roughly flows up and down the region of the 
spine, the line of energy that circles through us in 
various patterns between the earth and the sky, 
and the system of chakra points or centers of 
energy in the soles of the feet, the palms of the 
hands, and the seven points running from the 
base of the spine, genital area, naval point, heart, 
throat, middle of forehead and the top of the 
head. 

I have always been aware of an inner intuitive 
sense that seemed to reliably guide me as well as a 
sense of a more subtle "feeling" of objects beyond 
the way they looked, sounded or otherwise ap- 
peared. With years of study of kundalini yoga and 
meditation, this ability to feel the subtle qualities 
of objects and bodies increased. Besides being a 
mystically and philosophically oriented person, I 
had spent years being a jeweler, working with 



stones and metals. Through the years of being a 
jeweler I began to notice the correlation between 
the way a stone or metal felt, the color or ap- 
pearance of it and the way people felt when wear- 
ing it or otherwise being in contact with it. In 
other words, certain metals and stones made peo- 
ple feel certain ways. For example, the blood-red 
ruby seemed to make people feel warm and expan- 
sive, almost as if it affected their heart. Cool green 
stones seemed to have the ability to cool people 
who had too much "fire" in them, i.e. either with 
fevers and infections, strong tempers, or overstress- 
ed bodies. Sometimes gold seemed to strengthen a 
person, and sometimes silver. With the ability to 
sense the subtleties of what was going on with a 
person, I began to recommend what stones and 
metals that person should wear. Since I had also 
spent years being a musician as well as an artist 
and jeweler, I noticed that each sound or combina- 
tions of sound affected people in certain ways. I 
learned to apply the sound to specifically make 
changes in people whether it was to calm, 
strengthen or heal. I then began to study myself. 
How was I able to sense subtle energy flows within 
a person? How was I able to sense how a person 
was feeling and the state of their mind? How was I 
able to sense and feel vibration and know how to 
manipulate it? Most importantly, how was I to 
communicate to others how to develop these 
abilities in themselves once I discovered the 
mechanism that seemed to be natural to me? As I 
answered these questions for myself I began to be 
able to teach others how to do it with the use of 
certain methods and techniques. 

How can a particular vibrational rate or pattern be 
changed? It can be changed by introducing 
another more highly charged rate or pattern of 
vibration into the field initially created by that 
first vibrational set. This second vibrational pat- 
tern is fueled by focused, clear intention and pro- 
pelled and directed by the use of the will. The 
more the mind can be clear and free of distrac- 
tions as the intention is concentrated, the more 
focus there will be. The stronger the intention, the 
nervous system, the life-force and the over-all body 
health, the stronger the will. The strength of the 
focus and will determines the force and intensity 
of the second vibrational pattern that is created. 
This second vibrational pattern can be further in- 
tensified with sound, breath or quartz crystals, all 
of which tend to amplify vibration. When this 
more highly charged and amplified vibrational pat- 
tern is put into conjunction with the original 
vibrational set, it tends to pull the first set of 
vibrations up to its own level, overpowering and 
transmuting the original. What is left is the vibra- 
tional pattern that is intended. Because everything 
is in its essence vibration, when the vibrational 
pattern is changed there tends to be corresponding 
change on a physical level. 

This all sounds rather complicated, so rather than 



33 




HEALING ARTS AND RITUALS 




increase the sense of complexity by detailing dif- 
ferent types of energy systems, subtle vibrational 
patterns, and techniques to create and manipulate 
vibration, I will give to you one technique using 
quartz crystals, visualization, breath and sound. 
This technique can be used to personally ex- 
perience the power of these aforementioned tools 
to create a particular vibrational pattern within 
you and around you that will rid you of mental, 
emotional and physical tension. Instead, you will 
feel restful, peaceful and centered within yourself. 
You will be able to have your mind quiet enough 
to hear the inner, intuitive voice within, and so 
can have access to its wisdom. The more you can 
focus your attention, the more powerful this 
technique will be for you. You might do it several 
times before you experience its full potential. As 
you experience the harmonious state it creates, 
heal, relax and be happy. 

THE TECHNIQUE.... 

1 . Sit outside on the ground. If this is not 
possible, sit inside where you will not be in- 
terrupted. Light a candle that will burn at 
least one-half hour. Have with you a 
natural, clear quartz crystal at least two in- 
ches by one inch in size. Sit upright either 
on the ground, the floor, or in a chair in a 
relaxed, comfortable manner. Keep your 
spine straight, close your eyes and relax. 

2. Now, while still sitting with your eyes clos- 
ed, begin to breathe with long, slow, even, 
deep breaths. Inhale slowly and completely 
through the nose until the lungs are filled. 
Then release the breath through the nose, 
with a long, even breath until the lungs are 
completely emptied. Do not gasp for air or 
strain yourself. Keep your attention on the 
breath and do this for about three minutes 
to eleven minutes. Inhale, hold for a mo- 
ment and relax. 

]. Now, open your eyes and pick up your 

quartz crystal. Gaze into the crystal in a 
relaxed, focused manner for a few 
moments. Keep your attention focused on 
the crystal. 

4. Next, as you hold your quartz crystal recall 
a particular problem that you have. While 
focusing on the problem, take a deep 
breath and release it, seeming to "blow" the 
problem from you into the crystal. Focus 
on another problem and also "blow" it into 
the crystal as you exhale. Keep doing this 
until you can think of no more problems. 

5. Next, think of a particular problem that 
you have with your body; any illness, ache, 
pain etc. While you retain the problem in 
your mind, inhale deeply and exhale, 
"blowing" the problem into the crystal as 
you did before. Continue until all problems 
in your body have been "blown" one by 



one into the crystal. 

6. Next, notice if you have any emotions that 
you would like to be rid of. Pick one such 
emotion and while focusing on it, inhale 
and exhale, "blowing" the emotion from 
you into the crystal. Continue to do this 
with each unwanted emotion until have 
have "blown" them all into the crystal. 

7. Next, notice if you have any thoughts that 
you do not want to have. Take each 
thought and repeat the blowing process in- 
to the crystal. Finally, "blow" anything else 
that you might have missed that you do 
not want in you into the crystal. 

8. Next, as you continue to focus on the 
crystal, put it in the earth, point down. If 
you are inside, point it down through the 
floor into the earth. Imagine everything 
that you have put into the crystal flowing 
into the earth where it is "swallowed" and 
transmuted. When the crystal intuitively 
seems "empty" take a deep breath and 
sharply exhale through your mouth toward 
the earth as if clearing the last bit from the 
crystal. 

9. Pick up your quartz crystal and wave it 
through the flame and smoke of your can- 
dle that you lit earlier until it intuitively 
seems to be totally clear. 

10. Next, hold the crystal next to your heart 
center, which is in the middle of your chest 
between your breasts. Close your eyes and 
begin to breathe with long, deep breaths 
through your nose as before. Every time 
that you inhale, imagine a soft, pink light 
emanating from the crystal to slowly fill 
your body and seep outward through your 
skin to surround you with an egg-shaped 
orb of pink light. 

11. When you have imagined yourself sur- 
rounded with pink light, begin to sing the 
sound "AH" as if it is coming out from 
your heart center. Keep your eyes closed. 
You might feel that center begin to have a 
slight buzzing or tickling sensation. If you 
don't, imagine that the sound "AH" creates 
this sensation. Continue this for at least 
three minutes or for as long as you like. 

12. When you feel like stopping, do so and sit 
quietly for a few moments, enjoying how 
you feel. 

13. Because quartz crystal can store as well as 
transmit and receive vibrations, when you 
finish clear the crystal by burying it in the 
earth or keeping it in salt water for at least 
24 hours. 

Do this process as often as you like. You might ex- 
perience something different each time that you do 
it. Most importantly, however, enjoy the benefits 



34 




HEALING ARTS AND RITUALS 




and be happy! 



Uma Sita Sibley is a teacher, healer, writer, musician and artist. 
She designs quartz crystal jewelry which sell internationally, along 
with her three recordings, "Wakan Tanka," "The Crystal Path" 
and "Helios" (recorded with husband, Ramana Das). Her writings 
have most recently been published in YOGA JOUNRAL, 
MAGICAL BLEND, the JOURNAL OF WHOLISTIC 
HEALTH, and CIRCLE Magazine. Her upcoming book, THE 
CRYSTAL PATH, will be published in Summer, 1986. Uma 
resides in San Francisco, Calif. 




Susan Boulet 



THE HEALING TOUCH OF 
MAGICAL WOMEN 

Gail Montgomery 

What is this magical healing ability with which 

some women seem to be born? They are able to 

heal themselves and others with a mere touch! I've 

read about these extraordinary people who have 

this kind of power. I've even met some of these 

healers and had successful healings from them, and 

have gone to lectures by them. They are the 

"Healers," and then there are those of us who 

have enough understanding to accept that such a 

thing is real and enough desire to long for just 

such an ability and yet have not a bit of the 
tt ■ » 
magic . 

I am told over and over again that I also have 
those abilities if I'll just develop them. Is this true? 
Or are these blessed Healers just playing humble 
when they tell us that what they do is not 
unusual? I struggle for every bit of power I am able 
to obtain. For me it must be an act of the will, an 
act of consciousness, and an act of focus to 
manifest even the tiniest healing. 

I think the ability to heal a person, or make any 
other feat of magic, has to do with the instan- 
taneous flinging open of something like a window 
and then reaching through it before you have time 
to monitor yourself. 

I've noted in the training I have had in shamanic 
healing that the techniques are designed to busy 
all the brain's monitoring systems and thus give 
the acting-shaman a chance to fling open that win- 
dow. When I am chanting, directing drummers, 
using my rattle, locating the illness, seeing the ill- 
ness, and using certain physical movements to 
remove the illness, all simultaneously, there is 
hardly the time or brain power to be self con- 
scious. 

Those two words, "self conscious," I believe are 
contained in the secret to the Healer's magic. 
When we are monitoring ourselves; worried about 
how we look, if we'll succeed, what they think, 
and if we are "right," we block our ability to heal 
ourselves, others, or even our planet. We cannot 
heal for recognition and to be successful. 

The key to healing seems to be a moment in time 
when we are willing to let go of the ego. Some of 
us spend hours in meditations and prayer trying to 
rid of our egos. Getting rid of the ego is not 
health, and if a person should achieve such a 
cleansing, she would be so ungrounded that she 
would be unable to manifest significant power of 
any kind. What we want to "get rid of is our at- 
tachment to being right and admired. 

It seems that if we insist on being right and ad- 
mired by others for how we "do it," we are so 
busy polishing our egos that any significant heal- 
ing would be near impossible to manifest. When I 
think of the healing we as a people need in rela- 



35 



HEALING ARTS AND RITUALS 




tionship to each other and to Earth and her other 
children, I know that our egomania is like a creep- 
ing fungus silently sucking the healing energies 
from us all. Where I grew up we were often 
reprimanded for "showing out." I understand that 
type of behavior in children is called "showing off' 
in other regions. But what do we call this "center 
of the universe" behavior when we as adults self 
consciously perform for the eyes of others dozens 
of times each day? Well, whatever it is called; it is 
not healing. 

If, in fact, we are willing to become Healers we 
must connect with that powerful fragment of 
divine energy deep inside ourselves, be willing to 
trust ourselves, and let go of our self con- 
sciousness. 

Try this on yourself or a friend who needs healing 
from a simple headache. First get her permission 
and let her know that you may need to make 
more than one effort in order to actually manifest 
the healing. 

Position your body so that it is open, in other 
words, do not cross your body in any way. Get in 
a comfortable balanced position. Close your eyes; 
feel deep tap roots extending from the bottoms of 
your feet and the base of your tailbone deep into 
the earth. When the roots are in place begin to vi- 
sion a flame of energy that begins in your base 
chakra and grows taller and taller until it reaches 
your heart chakra. Experience the flame warming 
you until you feel yourself radiating warmth, then 
recall in a sensory memory what it feels like to 
love someone. Remember-feel the experience in 
your chest. One way to do this is to recall a mo- 
ment when you remember being deeply affected by 
the love you felt for someone. When you are 
powerfully connected with that love then allow 
yourself to feel it in your physical body. When 
your chest is filled with it then choose to expand 
the experience until it grows larger than your 
physical body. When you are willing, step out of 
your experience of being in your body and become 
the love. From that place of "being the love," 
reach out with your left hand and snatch away the 
headache and fling it into the nearest body of salt 
water or the flame of a fire. Then wash your 
hands in cold running water or water with a pinch 
of sea salt in it. 

Did it work? If not, then ask yourself these ques- 
tions. Did I wonder what I looked like doing this? 
Did I tell myself that this would never work for 
me? Did I wonder if I was doing it right? Did I 
start feeling like I was doing it just perfect? Did I 
remember my little "s" self at any point during the 
healing? Did I feel any anxiety or fear of failure? 
The bottom line is: did I monitor myself in any 
way or was I self conscious? 

If you did monitor yourself or were self conscious, 
then try chanting while you do the same thing 
again. You can use a chant you know or just a 
couple of syllables and a very simple tune. Start 



with the chant, and chant until the sound flows so 
easily you can do it without thinking then use 
your brain power to begin the exercise over. Just 
keep practicing until you experience that magic 
moment when you forget to remember how little 
you are. 

In that moment of real connection with Self the 
window is flung open and all the healing power of 
any Healer is ours to choreograph. 

For me this exercise is not easy, but when I am 
willing to let go and be my infinite Self for even a 
moment the powerful magic of healing is there. 
Best I can tell, those women who are "natural" 
Healers are women who are not self conscious, on 
any level, for the time they are directing that heal- 
ing energy. 



Gai7 Montgomery, M.S., has been leading women's workshops for 
13 years, and has trained with various shamans to teach cross- 
cultural shamanic processes for healing and well-being. Gail com- 
bines her shamanic work with psychosynthesis, gestalt, and spirituali- 
ty drawn from the divine feminine. Working with dreamtime and vi- 
sions, Gail helps others to connect with earth wisdom, personal 
female powers, and with the blossoming of the divine feminine spirit, 
to retrieve ancient healing rituals and to recover intuitive powers tn 
heal self and others. Gail resides in Sunnyvale, Calif. 



36 



HEALING ARTS AND RITUALS 



EXPLORING OTHER LIVES: 
HEALING THE ONES WE 
LIVE NOW 

Cerridwen Fallingstar 

'There is no end to the circle, no end. 
There is no end to life, there is no end.' 
— Starhawk, The Spiral Dance Ritual 

"Now," said Gran, "when doing green work, a 
balance must be kept, else your remedies shall lack 
potency." Annie and I nodded. We had been drilled to 
the notion of balance for as long as we could 
remember. Mina and Sarah were as attentive as if 
they too were new initiates being tutored at the arts of 
wortcunning. I wondered if Annie felt as proud as I 
did to at last be one of the women's circle, learning the 
arts that only women know. 

Gran went on to show us that some of the same herbs 
were used for potions to conceive as in the unguents to 
cast a child forth, and yet again in the teas used to aid 
in labor. She explained the importance of asking each 
swatch of herbs which purpose it wished to serve, so 
that the plant would lend the full strength of its spirit 
to the effect desired. She started us with bunches of the 
red and purple heather we had gathered, demonstrating 
how to hold the plant gently in the cupped palm, 
holding it over the three piles and placing it in the pile 
that made our hand tingle and glow when we passed 
over it. As we became more adept, she promised, we 
would but touch the herb and know in an instant what 
its choice would be. Annie quickly got the hang of it, 
her fingers sorting the plants as deftly as they wielded 
a needle. For me, the work came harder. I would hold 
a plant and see the part of the forest or heath it had 
come from, feel the hooves of browsing deer or sheep, 
sense the burrowing of roots, the ecstatic in-drinking of 
a deep rain. ..it was hard to narrow my vision. I could 
hear my Gran saying in exasperation, "This child's 
mind is as scattered as a float-about." I looked up 
guiltily, but her exasperation was a vivid memory only. 
Her eyes were closed, she was absorbed in the poun- 
ding rhythm of the mortar and pestle and the in- 
terweaving chant she and Mina and Sarah braided in- 
to shining ropes of water and color and fire... 

"Ya va ba tu saba yanda va tu sieb..." Sarah's high 
voice brushed its wings over us. "Ya va ba tu saba 
yanda va tu sieb." Gran's gravelly voice and Mina's 
resonant one joined in. "Ya va ba tu saba, van tu 
manya san ta sien, Van tu manya san tu sien." And 
the chant and the pounding and the motion of our 
hands and the steady rain and the cats purring and the 
fire talking wove into a song and soon all was so braid- 
ed I could not tell one thing from another and nothing 
existed but the rhythm and all that was not part of it 
vanished. 



The passage above is a short excerpt from a book I 
am writing called The Heart of Fire. Set in 16th 
century Scotland, it is a book about Witchcraft as 
it really was — an ancient system of healing, divina- 
tion, and nature worship. 

The unusual thing about the book is that it is not 
historical fiction, but posthumous autobiography. 
Every detail of the book is past life memory, ac- 
cessed by deep trance work. Library research con- 
firms and corroborates the historical accuracy of 
my visions. 

Traditionally, history is written by t .<■ winners. 
The healing arts and techniques of non-patriarchal 
cultures have been "lost," the healers and their 
records destroyed. But, "you can't kill the spirit; it 
goes on and on and on and on and on..." 
Nothing is really lost. My own explorations into 
other life spaces and the facilitation I have done 
with other people convinces me that time is not 
linear. Time is circle, spiral, mandala. All the 
power and the wisdom of our forebears — and our 
descendants — lies within our cells waiting to be 
sparked into life. 

Exploring other lives may be healing on many 
levels. A woman who has a particularly difficult 
relationship with her husband may remember 
another life in which her husband was an abusive 
father. As with childhood traumas, memory is the 
door that opens into release — by remembering 
and understanding her karmic choices, the woman 
can release the blocked or twisted energy and ex- 
perience a dramatic shift. Either the dynamics of 
the current relationship change, or her need to be 
in the relationship changes and she can let it go 
and move on. 





Insights into physical illness or injury, and subse- 
quent healing, often occur through awareness of 
other lives. Often if a person has been injured or 
killed in another life, the event seems to leave a 
psychic scar which causes the person to experience 
repeated pain in the same area of the body where 
they experienced the suffering before. Often, simp- 
ly seeing the original trauma releases the pattern, 
allowing healing to come. If necessary, an ex- 
perienced trance guide can facilitate healing with 
guided imagery and/or restructuring the past ex- 
perience into a beneficial one. Depending on the 
type or severity of the problem, the subject may 
want to continue herbal, pharmaceutical or other 
medical intervention to complete the physical side 
of the healing process. 

When we choose to remember, to become whole, 
we heal not only ourselves, but our culture. Tell- 
ing the truth about our past history empowers us 
all, bringing forth valuable information and ar- 



37 




HEALING ARTS AND RITUALS 




chetypes that are the roots of a healthy culture. 
And when we walk into our future, we receive the 
fruits of all the planetary healing work we are 
engaged in now. Seeing that the future exists, that 
the earth is still bountiful, that humans have 
created ways to live in intimate harmony with 
each other and with All-That-Is, inspires and en- 
courages all who experience it. And as we ex- 
perience it, we create it, we make it so. What is 
remembered lives. ..to heal us. 2 

'Naomi Littlcbear, "You Can't Kill the Spirit" 

2 Starhawk, The Spiral Dance Ritual 

Author's Note: For those who are interested in pursuing rein- 
enrnation trancework and healing, I recommend the chapter on 
Reincarnation in Diane Mariechild's book, Motherwit: A 
Feminist Guide to Psychic Development. 



Buy your Creative Woman at these 
bookstores. 



« j/V,**W«i#.H!«<^.- *^:tfr'-. 



wnscnaaeyss-asii* 



GUILD BDDKS 

2456 N. LINCOLN AVE. 

CHICAGO, IL 60614 

C3123 525-3667 



C.erridwcn Fallingstar is a writer and priestess who lives in Marin 
County with her partner, Elie Demers, and her son, Zahery 
Moonstone. She teaches magic classes with Reclaiming, and 
facilitates personal expansion and awareness through guided tarot 
meditation, time-travel and other trance-work journeys. Her book, 
THE HEART OF THE FIRE, will be complete by the end of I98i 
Cerridwen will be presenting at the 3rd annual Creative Arts as 
Therapy symposium, on reconciling the power and love chakras. 






Full Circle Books 

2205 Silver S.E. 

Albuquerque, New Mexico 07106 

(505) 266-0022 



QIOMNNKJ 

Roon 



345 S. 12th St., N.E. Corner 12th & Pine Sts. 

Philadelphia, PA 19107 

(215) 923-2960 






38 




HEALING ARTS AND RITUALS 



ANNOTATED 
BIBLIOGRAPHY 
AND RESOURCE LIST 

Suzanne Palmer 

The following books and resources may interest the general 
reader in learning more about the themes and topics of this 
issue. The comments are, in part, subjective summaries, based 
on my work as a healer. 

Barbara Ehrenreich and Deidre English, Witches, Midwives & 
Nurses, The Feminist Press, SUNY/Old Westbury, 1773; to be 
reprinted by Harper 6k Row, Spring, 1986. This 48-page pam- 
phlet will come as a surprise to many of us who do not know 
anything about witches and midwives except through socially- 
conditioned eyes. This book succinctly delineates the destruc- 
tion of folk medicine and of women healers as the direct result 
of the rise of church and state authority. Of special, contem- 
porary relevance, is the story of the rise of the medical profes- 
sion in America, at the expense of women healers in particular, 
and of valid alternative healing modes in general. 

Sheila Moon, Changing Woman and Her Sister: Feminine Aspects 
of Selves and Deities, Guild for Psychological Studies Pub. 
House, S.F., 1984. While not specifically focused on woman as 
healer, this book is so rich in the images and understandings of 
the evolution of feminine consciousness, that its relevance, for 
any woman healer embarked on her own journey, cannot be 
over emphasized. By comparing the Navaho images of feminine 
deity with other cross-cultural forms, and by showing the 
emergence of consciousness through the contemporary dreams 
of her clients, Sheila Moon ably demonstrates the quality of 
the journey which a woman must make on her way to becom- 
ing a healer. 

Shaun McNiff, The Arts and Psychotherapy, Chas. C. Thomas, 
III., 1981. Beginning with a marvelous chapter on "The Endur- 
ing Shaman," Shaun McNiff relinks some of the ancient forms 
and processes of the traditional shaman with the contemporary 
practices of expressive arts therapists. He then proceeds to look 
at expression in and of itself, and then in relation to the arts 
for therapy. He covers oral and written language; movement, 
dance, and the body; sound and music; visual imagery; and 
drama. He concludes that "the modern artist-therapist has 
more in common with the aboriginal shaman than the medical- 



ly trained therapists, whose methods are more often than not 
antithetical to the artistic process." Viewing shamanism and 
psychotherapy as related processes of "empowerment," McNiff 
sees all people as "potential alchemists of the spirit," and the 
arts offering "a very old and predictable hope in sanctifying life 
through creative enactment." McNiffs bibliography covers a 
cross- section of the standard accepted works on the creative- 
arts as therapy. 

Jeanne Achterberg, Imagery in Healing: Shamanism and Modern 
Medicine, Shambala, Boston, 1985. Jeanne Achterberg's ideas 
provide a special format for looking at the healing process 
within contemporary medical practice. Women and men alike 
were called to the shamanic path. The use of imagination to 
heal underlies the healing process regardless of cultural 
variants. She overviews the fate of Wise Woman/witch/shaman 
historically. After surveying the function of imagination in the 
physical, behavioral and social sciences, she shares the exciting 
uses of imagination in the field of psychoneuroimmunology, 
modern medicine using mind to heal. Not a book for every 
reader, but worth the effort for any working woman healer. 

Garrett Porter 6k Patricia A. Norris, PhD, Why Me?: Harnessing 
the Healing Power of the Human Spirit, Stillpoint Pub., Walpole, 
N.H., 1985. This is a rare and special personal history of a nine 
year old boy, Garrett, and his therapist, Dr. Norris. Garrett 
has an "inoperable and terminal" brain tumor. While their 
work is labeled "adjunctive cancer therapy," a support to 
regular medical treatment, this story itself suggests a coequal 
relationship among physician, therapist, and patient, as a 
superior model for treatment of disease. Garrett's personal 
labors in healing, shared in his own words, and his own 
perspective on how/why he healed, provide a lesson to us in 
overcoming adult prejudices and resistance to our own abilities 
to heal ourselves. 

Joan Halifax, Shaman: The Wounded Healer, Crossroad Pub., 
N.Y., 1981. This work, part of a wonderful series on an Il- 
lustrated Library of Sacred Imagination, helps us to recognize 
special human experiences common to all cultures. While the 
shamanic experiences and practices may seem extreme to most 
of us today, they focus our attention on the inner journey 
which all of us, whether we know it or not, are engaged in. 
The focus on the wounded healer archetype is crucial to 
woman as healer; it reminds us of the integral connection bet- 
ween our own wounding and healing processes. The art of heal- 
ing is not learned in books, but in the risks taken, and courage 
found, within the healer herself, as she travels her unique path. 




39 



PERSONAL EXPERIENCE 



PERINATAL DEATH, 
BEREAVEMENT AND THE 
HEALING PROCESS 

Janet Green 

I lost a child in April 1984. In coming through 
that experience I did a research paper on 
bereavement, wrote a personal account for a 
counseling course, addressed the campus group, 
"Theology for Lunch", on the topic; and, thanks 
to The Creative Woman, which financed the 
registration fee, attended a national conference 
on perinatal bereavement in Akron, Ohio. In 
this article I want to share what I have learned, 
both in my study and on a personal level. 

THE HEALING PROCESS 

The healing process of maternal grief is a very 
complex one. There is still a lot we do not know 
about what is involved in the maternal grieving 
process. What I have found out both from 
research and personal experience is invaluable. 
The process of helping families get through the 
loss of an infant is terribly important and still to 
be further developed by those in the medical 
and helping professions. 

Perinatal death can be classified in four ways: 1) 
within the first year of life from undetermined 
causes (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome): 2) dur- 
ing the first six months— neonatal death; 3) 
stillbirth; and 4) prenatal-miscarriage. 

Mothers need a chance to talk about their ex- 
perience. A failure to accept the reality of the 
loss or pathological behavior can occur if some 
outlet is not found for the mother. A bond is 
formed between mother and child actually from 
the time of conception. The feeling of loss is 
almost indescribable; a part of yourself has been 
lost, like losing an arm or any other part of your 
body. Something you have loved and longed for, 
for many months, is suddenly gone. 

Emotions vary from woman to woman but 
usually the age of the infant or fetus at time of 
death has no bearing on the intensity of grief. 
Some common characteristics shared by women 
are: 1) feelings of anger, bitterness, guilt and 
failure. 2) The details surrounding the birth and 
death are vividly remembered long afterwards. 3) 
Grieving mothers found communication chan- 
nels closed, so that when mothers were inter- 
viewed there was a great outpouring of emotion. 
4) Husband-wife relationships became strained, 
usually because of a breakdown in communica- 
tion. 5) Women had unsatisfactory relationships 
with their physicians. 6) Hospital staff and rules 





Somehow the miracle of life 
Still exists within death. 
And I still continue to live 
Perhaps to believe in love . . . 
As I am able to say: 
"My baby has died." 



often hindered the resolution of grief. 7) The 
total resolution of maternal grief is a continuous 
process— sometimes referred to as "shadow grief." 
Shadow grief is that portion that is always tuck- 
ed away in a mother's heart or memory. This 
does not mean that the grieving process has not 
been resolved. It means that your life will always 
be a little bit different because of what has hap- 
pened to you. Things like the baby's birthday 
may always bring back those bittersweet 
memories, and feelings of love that you will 
always have for that baby. 

The mother's relationship with others is perhaps 
the most significant factor throughout this whole 
process, and the most significant factor in your 
relationship is communication. Very few people, 



40 



doctors, nurses, family members, and friends 
know how to talk to a grieving parent. 

In understanding the husband-wife relationship 
during the death of a child, the first thing to 
consider is the maternal-infant bonding. There is 
probably no stronger bond in the world than 
this one, the baby has been a part of her, gotten 
its nourishment, its actual life from her since 
conception. She feels the baby inside her, and at 
birth has biological needs to hold and feed her. 
The father on the other hand, does not have 
these biological attachments. He certainly has 
emotional ones however. He intellectualizes 
these feelings sometimes by analyzing himself 
and his life. He usually becomes more emotional- 
ly involved as the pregnancy develops and 
reaches its peak when the child is born. These 
differences in bonding with the infant can cause 
very severe communication problems between 
husband and wife. What society expects from 
the father has a big impact also. Our culture 
says the man must be strong, supportive, macho, 
and never be weak or emotional. So even if the 
father is truly hurting, it's very hard for him to 
show it. The grieving process is different for the 
father and mother because of these reasons and 
awareness of this can greatly alleviate some of 
the pain and stress between the couple. 

The physician plays a great role in this ex- 
perience. Sometimes the physician is afraid of 
death and therefore likes to avoid it. It is a pro- 
blem in the use of medical responsibility. Their 
training and professional attitudes are oriented 
to life, and death provokes anxiety for them. So 
they sometimes deal with their anxiety by 
avoiding the patients. One of the best things 
they can do is to give the parents the freedom to 
do as they please, exempt them from the subjec- 
tion to the will of others. Parents need the 
power of choice. Some ways to overcome these 
obstacles are to offer the parents the option to 
see, hold, and be with their baby. Give them 
mementos such as footprints, the baby's blanket 
or any other object that can serve as a memory. 
Discuss with the parents the details of the baby's 
circumstances. Letting them know what is 
wrong, what can and can't be done and then 
allowing them to make their own decisions is 
best for the parents. 

Once the mother is home she must deal with 
other people. Again, family and friends are 
usually well meaning but can be hurtful. A 
mother needs a listening ear, caring visitors, and 
tokens of kindness. 

Funeral arrangements can be a devastating ex- 
perience. Sometimes other family members want 
to take control, thinking it is best for the family. 
Only the parents should be given the opportuni- 



ty to decide what they want and should be given 
all options involved. Some funeral homes have 
no fees for infant services or burials; this is a 
comfort in the face of mounting medical bills. 

The funeral has an important function as heal- 
ing ritual. The pain of unexpressed grief, the 
emotional misunderstanding and mis- 
communication between the parents, when there 
is no funeral, is eloquently revealed in Robert 
Frost's poem, "Home Burial." Without a sancti- 
fying ceremony to give meaning to loss, the 
grieving parents are left with unresolved grief. 

The general community response can be one of 
avoidance. This is because our culture attributes 
lack of significance to infant death. If it were an 
older child, they would understand. But the 
thought of an infant dying doesn't seem to carry 
as much weight. This general attitude can make 
it hard on a grieving mother and father. 

A subsequent pregnancy is usually the ending 
chapter in the grieving process. It should not be 
an attempt to replace the child, because that can 
never be done. But a new child can bring much 
meaning into the family's life. A mother should 
expect a great deal of anxiety with this subse- 
quent pregnancy. 

Persons working with grieving mothers need to 
be thoroughly educated with the literature con- 
cerning grief and loss. The grief over a baby's 
death cannot be underestimated or compared 
with other's grief. Focus should be put on em- 
pathy and sensitivity; both of these can be learn- 
ed from the mother herself and from each other. 
These mothers need to be taught positive adjust- 
ment and survival. 

There is still an overwhelming need for carefully 
planned research based on qualitative data. Sup- 
port groups and in-hospital bereavement pro- 
grams have been established in the last few 
years. They offer aid, comfort, information and 
support to parents experiencing this tragedy. 

In November of 1985, I attended a National 
Perinatal Bereavement Conference in Akron 
Ohio sponsored by the Human Values in 
Medicine Program and Area Health Education 
Center of the Northeastern Ohio Universities 
College of Medicine with The College of Nurs- 
ing Continuing Education of the University of 
Akron. Here nurses, doctors, social workers, 
chaplains and parents gathered to develop a bet- 
ter understanding of the grieving parents, to 
learn from each others' programs and to give 
support to a fledgling field. More conferences 
have been sch' Juled across the country to bring 
a better understanding to the medical public 
about the needs and concerns of these parents 
and what can be done to make this healing pro- 
cess an easier one. 



41 



A PERSONAL ACCOUNT 

I have personally experienced perinatal bereave- 
ment losing a daughter a few hours after her 
birth. My pregnancy was planned. We were 
thrilled when it was confirmed. 1 had some reser- 
vations: I was terribly ill with morning sickness, 
1 was concerned about a new baby interfering 
with my graduate studies and wondered about 
the age difference between my son (who was 4 
years old at the time) and the baby. 

When I was about IVi months pregnant I had a 
very large weight gain which was unusual for 
me. My doctor thought I was having twins and 
ordered a routine ultrasound test. The ultra- 
sound showed some abnormalities, so my doctor 
immediately had me transferred to the Universi- 
ty of Chicago for further testing. At this point I 
was in a state of shock that left me somewhat 
detached from the whole situation. At the 
university there were many residents and other 
students that came in during my endless round 
of ultrasounds. Comments were made such as, 
"I've never seen anything like that before!" and 
"Now is that the lungs there?. . .no that is the 
liver." At that point I was emotionless. It was 
decided shortly afterwards, after consulting with 
the specialist and my own obstetrician that labor 
should be induced, as there was virtually no 
chance of the baby's survival outside of the 
uterus and my own health would be in danger. 

My labor and delivery experience at the hospital 
were fascinating. I was heavily medicated and 
still in a state of detachment. It was very much a 
medical/physical process for me in that I felt 
very little emotion. My greatest source of distress 
was watching my husband go through such 
pain. I had not realized how strongly he felt un- 
til that time. As soon as the baby was delivered 
they whisked her off to the Neonatal Intensive 
Care Unit and left us alone in the delivery 
room — holding onto each other. 

The hospital staff was knowledgeable and 
understanding about the grieving process involv- 
ed in infant death. They strongly encouraged me 
to hold the baby (which my own obstetrician 
strongly advised against). A chaplain came in to 
read scripture and give a prayer for her and then 
they left us alone — allowing us to spend as much 
time as we wanted with her. They gave us pic- 
tures and her blanket, knit cap and bracelets. 
(Later, when people came to see us at home, I 
felt so foolish showing them the cap and blanket 
instead of a real baby. Now I am proud to store 
and cherish them.) 

We kept the whole situation a private matter. 
We had a private burial with our son, our pastor 
and the funeral home director. Our parents live 



long distances away and were not with us, 
which may have been difficult for them also. We 
took Chris, my son, to my parents a few days 
before I was to go into the hospital so he could 
stay with them, and one of the strongest impres- 
sions I have from the whole experience is watch- 
ing Chris walk off with my father— I wanted to 
run and hold onto him for dear life, as if I were 
losing him too. Christopher has felt the loss too, 
and still talks about "our baby", asking to stop 
and see her gravesite, which we do. 

My feelings of loss and grief came later. Even 
though I did think of the baby a lot, and ex- 
perienced all of the symptoms that were discuss- 
ed in the earlier pages, I still did not feel the 
grief. Only a subtle depression that was slowly 
taking over my life, taking away my motivation 
and purpose. The holidays were hard— seeing 
other little girls that were the same age as my 
daughter would have been. I wanted to be able 
to buy clothes and toys for her and get her pic- 
ture taken with Santa. . .all those things. I think 
finally acknowledging those feelings started me 
back to the real world. The healing process takes 
time and bad days come with the good. As time 
passed, the pain softened, and bad days occurred 
less often. Life does go on. Chris started 
Kindergarten and I continued with my studies 
with an added zeal, perhaps more sensitive to 
the needs of others and with a greater reverence 
for life. 



Janet Green is editorial assistant for The Creative Woman, and a 
graduate student in School Psychology. She is married and the mother of 
a seven year old son. 



42 



LETTERS TO THE EDITOR 






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LETTERS TO THE EDITOR 



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44 





£ D / T O R 'S COLUMN 





EVERY DAY A SABBATH: 

A REPORT 

The tradition of the academic sabbatical derives 
from the ancient Judeo-Christian practice of the 
Sabbath— the season or day of rest and repose, 
an intermission from work and worldly cares, 
from pain, effort and sorrow; a time of joy, of 
freedom, of introspection, reading and prayer. 
The sabbatical is one of the great blessings of 
academic life, when used well. It provides a time 
for "plerk" which is that special almost holy 
kind of work that is like play in that it is freely 
chosen and deeply desired. (Plerk is what people 
do who love their work so much that they 
sometimes ask in wonder, "Am I really getting 
paid for this? I'd do this for free!") Your editor 
enjoyed the first six months of 1986 on such a 
sabbatical, spent at the University of California 
at Berkeley, at Earlham College in Richmond, 
Indiana, and ending with a visit to Washington, 
D.C. 

I attended conferences, visited classes, par- 
ticipated in seminars, met many women in the 
forefront of feminist theory and writing, read in 
the field of feminist literary criticism (acquiring 
more than forty new books in the process) and 
cogitated on how feminism relates to the 
psychology of women and especially to the 
understanding of women's creativity and the 
obstacles to its expression. This column will 
describe some of the highlights of my sabbath. 




Association for Women in Psychology 

AWP held its eleventh annual national con- 
ference on feminist psychology in Oakland, 
March 6-9. Virginia O'Leary and Barbara 
Wallston were keynote speakers (social 
psychology), Ravenna Helson gave an Invited 
Address (adult development) and there were 
workshops and panels on conflict resolution, sex- 
ual harrassment, women in academia, sexual 
identity, rape prevention, federal legislation, 
mothering, feminist spirituality, unlearning 
racism, neuropsychology of sex/gender dif- 
ferences, feminist therapy, overcoming childhood 
traumas and "empowerment through clear think- 
ing skills." On the cutting edge of feminist 
theory was Barbara Wallston's address, "What's 
in a Name?" in which she discussed the impor- 
tance of the naming of our field, contrasting the 



theoretical underpinnings and political implica- 
tions of "psychology of women", "feminist 
psychology," and "psychology of gender." The 
last term, proposed by Nancy Henley, implies a 
parallel status but "everything isn't parallel!", 
Wallston points out, insisting that feminism 
must be built on the notion that women are an 
oppressed group and that oppression should end. 
There is also the danger that the "masculinist" 
position could carry an anti-feminist boomerang. 
Barbara Wallston has promised to send her 
paper to us for a future issue of TCW on 
feminist theory; readers will meet her criticque 
again in these pages. 



BERKELEY WOMEN S 




LAW IOURNAL 



A Forum on The Color Purple became a vigorous 
and emotional debate between black women and 
men on the impact of the novel and the film on 
attitudes about black males in this society and 
on the role of art in changing attitudes. Luisah 
Teish was dynamic, speaking of her study of 
African religion and medicine and how it relates 
to the consciousness, strength and centeredness 
of black women, so well expressed in Alice 
Walker's powerful novel. 




Our awareness of the black American experience 
has been, until recently, dominated by male 
voices: Richard Wright, James Baldwin, Ralph 
Ellison have taught us to see the mask and the 



45 



"invisible man" behind the mask. Only recently, 
with the novels of Toni Morrison, Maya 
Angelou, Ann Petri and Alice Walker (and the 
re-discovery of Zora Neale Hurston) has the 
black woman's story been brought vividly to 
public consciousness. Color Purple is about 
women's transcendence: Celie triumphs because 
she learns to be feisty from Sophia, learns love 
from Nettie, and learns pleasure from Shug. 
True, the film is not the same thing as the book. 
Walker's novel is subtle, dark, full of nuances, 
spiritual. Spielberg's film is sunny, slick and pret- 
tied up. Why does he never show Celie writing a 
letter? Why does the purple of the novel become 
pink in the film? 




The Second Annual Empowering Women of 
Color Conference presented a panel on feminist 
spirituality that included dance and ritual along 
with verbal presentations. 

The Forum on Women and Development ad- 
dressed the question "Is Sisterhood Global?" and 
explored the differences in women's struggles for 
liberation among Third World societies. Aihwa 
Ong, Malaysian anthropologist, described what 
happens to third world women in global fac- 
tories as "the construction and reconstruction of 
gender." Used to the oppression of gender, they 
find another kind of oppression in the fac- 
tory — the oppression of the machine, the clock, 
the factory, the supervisor. One effect of this 
forum was to cause the participants to question 
"ourselves, our ethnocentric, anthrocentric, or 
rationalistic biases in our approach to women in 
the third world." 

The famous campus is beautiful in springtime, 
with flowering trees and students studying or 
sleeping on the grassy lawns. Yes, the students 
were demonstrating as of yore: it seemed like a 
rerun of the sixties. Every day the students built 
their symbolic shantytowns, protest against the 
University's investments in South Africa. Every 
night the campus police tore them down and ar- 
rested students. The students made a point that 



the State of California has now agreed with, 
divesting not only the University but the State 
of all investments that support apartheid. 

Berkeley is an intellectual's paradise, especially in 
the field of feminist studies. I visited Christina 
Maslach's class on psychology of women and 
Lois Helmbold's seminar on feminist theory. My 
last day there I attended a conference on the 
Paradigm Shift where I met and listed to Fritjof 
Capra (The Tao of Physics, The Turning Point), 
Charlene Spretnak (Green Politics) Susan Griffin 
(Woman and Nature) and Paula Gunn Allen 
(Sacred Hoop). The agenda seemed like a sum- 
mary of the concerns of TCW: peace, ecology, 
feminism, human rights, third world issues. 

Susan Griffin has evolved a unique theory of the 
cause of war which she presented at the 
Paradigm Shift Conference and has also promis- 
ed to send us a version of her address. 

My sponsor, Nadine Lambert, the most eminent 
spokeswoman for school psychology in the 
United States, was helpful in steering me toward 
people I needed to meet and get to know. Clara 
Sue Kidwell, professor of Native American 
studies, has agreed to be guest editor of our 
special issue on Native American Women; her 
expertise and many contacts among the creative 
women in the field guarantee an outstanding 
issue. 




The long drive to and from the Coast was itself 
a time for reflection and learning. Stopping at 
the Acoma pueblo in New Mexico, I visited 
"Sky City", the oldest continuously inhabited 
place in North America and talked with descen- 
dants of a people who have practiced matrilineal 
inheritance all the way to modern times. Proper- 
ty is passed down to the only daughter, or to 
the youngest daughter. The potters of Acoma 
(all women) produce a distinctive black-on-white 
ware based on prehistoric patterns as well as col- 
ored geometric designs based on birds and 
flowers. Acoma is the thinest and lightest in 
weight of all modern Indian pottery. 

Earlham College, small, fine, Quaker school, is a 
different place, equally interesting in its way. 
Here student protest took the form of erecting 
white wooden crosses on the green lawns, one 
for every victim of South African apartheid. 
Here, with access to the Earlham Computing 



46 



Center, I learned to relate to their digital com- 
puter. . .sufficiently to do my writing on the 
word processor. There are an impressive group 
of feminist scholars at Earlham, who, meeting 
regularly and informally, have created a women's 
"salon" that would he the envy of larger and 
more famous places. Near the plain, classic 
Meeting House on the campus is a statue of 
Mary Dyer, hanged on Boston Common on 
June 1, 1660 for being a Quaker. Students and 
faculty pass her silent, brooding presence on 
their paths between the library, student center 
or Co-op. She reminds passersby that the strug- 




gle for freedom never ends and the price must he 
paid over and over again. 

On a sabbatical one is supposed to have time to 
do those things that often get pushed to the 
background of our busy lives: Such a long- 
postponed event was a visit to Allegra Stewart 
who taught me English and American literature, 
composition and creative writing at Butler 
University in Indianapolis many years ago. Dr. 
Stewart is alive and well, sending her latest book 
off to the publisher, editing a volume of poems, 
eager to talk about old times as well as feminist 
issues, on which I find her an informed and 
committed feminist. It was deeply moving to find 
again this majestic woman and brilliant scholar 
who was my mentor when I was a schoolgirl. 
Readers will have a chance to test this for 
themselves when we publish Dr. Stewart's article 
on Gertrude Stein in an upcoming issue. 

Were we lucky to land in Washington when so 
much was going on? The Capital was vibrant 
with activity and issues that week in June: 
visiting the Senate, they were debating tax 
reform; the House astonished itself by voting 
unanimously for Ron Dellums' bill on sanctions 
against South Africa; and the day we went to 
the Supreme Court, they handed down their 
landmark decision on sexual harrassment in the 
workplace, ruling for the plaintiff on the grounds 
that although she had been "willing" to comply, 
she had not "welcomed" her employer's sexual 
advances and was therefore entitled to redress. 
The distinction between "willing" and "welcom- 
ing" is important and a nice distinction. 

In sum, a time of great stimulation, of looking in 
new directions, of putting things in perspective. 
Spiritual refreshment. Sabbaticals are great. 
Everyone should take one. 

HEH 



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University Park, IL 60466-3193 










ADDRESS CORRECTION REQUESTED 



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